‘Sunset House’ over Afghanistan

One of Cayman’s dive locations has come together with the public sector to offer a special free trip to a young couple who are being kept apart by war.

Jenna Brimmer and her husband, Christopher, will be arriving in Cayman at a time that suits them when Christopher’s tour of duty in Afghanistan is over.

“In each issue of Scuba Diving Magazine, the magazine publishes a winning letter and awards a prize donated by a gear manufacturer,” said Keith Sahm of Sunset House.

“In the November/December 2011 issue, a letter submitted by Jenna Brimmer was chosen as their Win This! prize winner. This was no ordinary letter, but a letter sent by the heart to help a scuba loving husband find some sense of home in the war torn regions of Afghanistan.”

She had written to the magazine to let them know she sent Scuba Diving to her husband who loved to read about diving and remember fun times of the past.

“It allows him to have a little piece of home in such a crazy, unfamiliar place so far away. An advanced open-water diver, he loves scuba diving and has gone more times than I can count, including his favourite destinations in Grand Cayman and Baja, Mexico. I’m writing with the hope that you might put this letter in; it would lighten his spirits and put a smile on his face,” she wrote.

Prizes and momentum

The prize that SPC Brimmer and Jenna won from the magazine was two DCT dive lights donated by Moray Dive Gear. Moray’s Trevor Theriault had the light custom–made; a pink one for Jenna and a camouflaged one inscribed with SPC Christopher Brimmer.

The story also moved the staff and management at Sunset House by what they described as Jenna’s innocent and heartwarming request to make her husband’s deployment easier that they said they could not wait to get involved and are treating the couple to a complimentary stay in one of their renovated oceanview rooms.

There’s also all the diving the couple can do including a trip to the USS Kittiwake after Chris’s deployment in Afghanistan is over. Grand Cayman is one of Chris’s favourite destinations.

“This was one of those moments where we looked at each other and all said the same thing, ‘Let’s thank them as well with a dive vacation,’” the staff at Sunset House said.

Some of SPC Brimmer’s fondest memories of diving in Grand Cayman were the shore dives right off the front of Sunset House in 2008, they since found out.

Amazing kindness

In a phone conversation with Mr. Sahm, Jenna related how Chris and she had been sweethearts since ninth grade and after a long engagement, got married two months before Chris went overseas. Jenna also said her father-in-law (a scuba instructor) was teaching her how to dive and could not wait to do her open water check out off the shore of Sunset House alongside her husband in the clear warm waters of Grand Cayman.

Chris Brimmer replied on the Facebook page of Sunset House that it was an ‘amazing display of kindness.’

“I can’t thank you enough. I’m speechless. I had a couple night dives and shore day dives at the Sunset House back in ’08. I saw my first nurse shark and manta ray right out there and I’m pretty sure a box jelly.

“Thank you again,” he said. “I think my wife has outdone herself with all this, she is such an amazing support line and wife thank you!.

I hope to keep in touch with you along this path I’m taking out here and someday soon see you in the islands.”

With momentum buzzing after the word of Sunset House offering the free stay, the Cayman Islands Department of Tourism is getting on board, said Mr. Sahm and so is Cayman Airways.

“Once the lovely couple gets on island, there will be even more outpouring of Caymankind,” he said.


  1. It is so refreshing to find stories like this in the Compass these days. Hats off to Sunset House and their staff for picking up and caring enough to give, especially when times are tough all around.
    Never stayed at Sunset House on our visits, but next time, we definitely will.
    Good for you guys!

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