Johnson was working in the financial industry in New York City prior to Sept. 11, 2001. He had plans to return to Great Britain and become a British officer, but in the aftermath of the tragedy, he wed his girlfriend and joined the U.S. Coast Guard. He served aboard myriad Cutters — Forward, Midgett, Confidence, Bainbridge Island and Venturous. He also was assigned to Sectors New York, New England and currently, St. Petersburg. Growing up, Johnson played soccer and rugby, and is very excited about getting involved in adaptive athletics. After an accident aboard one of his Cutters and various experiences that occurred later, he was subsequently diagnosed with TBI and PTSD. His biggest challenge is coming to terms with his new normal and adapting to the changes. He is most grateful for the strong support of his wife. “Miranda has been my rock through this process and without her I have no idea where I would be at this point,” says Johnson. He plans to go back to school, get a Ph.D. in Organizational Psychology and eventually teach.

Photo of Paul Johnson

Paul Johnson

Coast Guard Electrician’s Mate 1st Class

Age: 36

Current Command/Position: U.S. Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg

Current Hometown: Tampa, Fla.

Disability: TBI/PTSD, sustained in a shipboard accident