On July 8, 2009, an 18-year-old girl sat in a rocking chair outside her family’s bungalow on Beach 109th Street. Having just had all her wisdom teeth removed and struggling to eat a hamburger at a bungalow court barbecue, Jessie Zimmer who described herself as looking like a “chipmunk” at the time, was caught off guard when a handsome man with an English accent took a seat next to her.
The man, 22-year-old Craig Richardson, was one of the many wounded soldiers in town for the Wounded Warriors Weekend in Rockaway. Bobby Zimmer, a member of the Graybeards, which was working with the Warriors, connected them with some fellow bungalow residents who were willing to host the soldiers in their seaside homes for the weekend. Some of the soldiers who were hosted at the bungalows were from BLESMA, the British Limbless Ex-Servicemen’s Association.
Outside one bungalow, something special unfolded. “That’s where the …