Serving Those Who Have Sacrificed


Danny Fleary says his wife of more than 20 years will tell you he talks too much.


In fact, the 65-year-old disabled veteran, who goes to treatment at James A. Haley Veterans’ Hospital, just can’t stop talking about how much he loves the Spurlino Family YMCA at Big Bend Road.


“I’ve learned to make this a place to come and enjoy. I came for the grand opening. I still wasn’t committed, but I came and kept coming back,” says Danny, who lives in Riverview.


Danny suffers from polymyalgia, an inflammatory disorder that causes muscle pain and stiffness but is now off his medication. He took a Y Weight class and has dropped over 30 pounds. His BMI (Body Mass Index) and glucose levels have also gone down since joining the Y.


The Y is also where Danny discovered his love of swimming. “When I’m out at the pool, I don’t have any hair. But I put on my black swim cap, I got some nice goggles, I got gloves and my jug of water and I do my thing,” he says. You can also find him lounging in a chair with his earphones listening to reggae.


Danny encourages everyone, not just veterans and seniors, to take advantage of all the benefits the Y has to offer. “Come on, off the couch! Fake it till you make it – even if it’s just to put your feet in the water. I’m putting the same challenge out to our youth,” he says. “If you see me, roll up on me quietly and introduce yourself.”


The Tampa Y proudly partners with the James A. Haley Veterans’ Hospital and Clinic to provide health and wellness programming to the veteran population in Hillsborough and East Pasco counties. The Y is honored to help better the lives of thousands of Tampa Bay veterans, like Danny, and thank each of them for their sacrifice and service!



Pictured above: Danny Fleary swims in the warm water pool at the Spurlino Family YMCA. 

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