Ren was born and raised in Wilmington, NC, a quant, seaside community rich in history and natural resources. From day one he was immersed in coastal living and was fortunate enough to have been raised with his toes in the marsh and estuaries of the area. Ren’s father, humanitarian, biologist and teacher, has been the Scuba instructor as well as the director of water safety for the University of North Carolina at Wilmington since the mid 70s and always had Ren around the ocean. Ren began scuba diving at the age of 6 years and after a short period of inactivity during his college years he got back in the water and has never come out.
Ren attended the University of North Carolina at Wilmington where he received an athletic scholarship to play baseball. In the summer of 1997 he spent all summer between thunderstorms obtaining his private single engine pilots license. He graduated with a degree in communication studies and a minor in recreation and in 2001 started Complete Playgrounds, Incorporated.
“I have always loved being in the wild whether in the back woods, deep in the marshes, above the clouds flying or immersed in the ocean, you just can’t beat the feeling of being untouchable and free.”
He began freedive spearfishing in June of 2006 and took the Performance Freediving intermediate course in October 2006 in Miami. Unable to do the ocean portion of the course due to weather, he traveled to the Cayman Islands where his love for the sport as well as the sense of accomplishment grew. In the past year, he has made somewhat of a name for himself in the spearfishing community as a videographer and underground producer of spearfishing videos with his Searen Productions. Since Ren’s introductions into the sport, he has refined his skills through the PFI professional courses and experiences such as the 2008 Team World Championships in Egypt where he assisted and cheered on his partner Ashley Futral.
“Freedive instruction has to be the most rewarding thing that I have ever done. When folks come into these courses and completely blow the doors off of their expectations, it is just amazing to see their excitement and it makes me feel like a million bucks because I helped get them there. Not only that, the skills which they have learned could very well save their life or the life of other’s. That’s what it’s all about.”