On January 29, 2019, Jamie Corbett experienced the unfathomable. Her son Gunner drowned. He was only 2 years old. While Jamie survives her great loss on a daily basis, she’s made the decision to make Gunner’s tragic death matter in a way that made sense to her, and that was to become a survival swim instructor. 

“I decided it was time to make a difference,” Jamie says of her decision to become a survival swim instructor. After much research and due diligence, Jamie contacted Texas Swim Academy owner Kathleen McMordie, RN, to inquire about becoming a certified instructor through the Survival Swim Network. 

“I needed his life to matter,” Jamie says of Gunner. “I want to protect a family from going through the things I’ve gone through.” 

Drowning remains the leading cause of unintentional death in children ages 1 to 4 years old. And while no one thinks it can happen to them, it can, and oftentimes happens most during non-swim times. Non-swim times are when no one is in or near the pool, moments when children get past an adult in the house whether it’s through a doggie door or an unlocked door. 

Survival swim lessons provide young children with the skills necessary to surface to the water, roll-back-to-float position and breath, and swim to the wall. Age-appropriate kids are taught to pull themselves out of the water. 

But not all swimming lessons are equal, which is why dedicated people like Jamie do their research to become an instructor through a reputable program that not only has proven results but is designed to keep kids safer in and around the water, giving them the skills necessary should an aquatic incident occur. 

One of the most common misconceptions about swimming lessons is that once a child “graduates” from class there’s no need to continue learning. The reality is, there is no graduation from swimming lessons. Maintenance lessons are an imperative part of a child’s learning experience as they grow older. Parents must also play an active role in their child’s continued swimming education. 

Practicing the skills at home, learning how to replicate what is being taught in survival swim lessons while in your own pool, replicating with your child what is learned in class are the keys to successful lessons. And these very things are communicated to children and their families through the right qualified swim instructor and survival swim program. 

“If you want to save people’s lives, become a survival swim instructor,” says Jamie. 

If you’re interested in becoming a Survival Swim Development Network instructor, call Kathleen McMordie at 832-437-6186 to learn more about making a difference in a child’s life. To enroll your child in survival swim lessons or to learn more about our survival swim program contact us today. Be sure to follow Gunner’s Gift on Facebook to learn more about Jamie’s advocacy against childhood drowning. 


Texas Swim Academy is a state-of-the-art swimming facility offering water safety, survival swim, and kids swimming lessons in Katy, Texas. Owners Kathleen and Bruce McMordie, alongside our certified staff, help parents introduce children to water at an early age through the Infant Survival Swim Program , teaching life-saving techniques and basic swimming skills.

Our Stroke Development Program offers six different levels to help students progress in their swimming skills at his or her own pace. Our Adaptive Aquatics Program was created specifically for children with special abilities. Find swimming class registration information here. By subscribing to Texas Swim Academy’s blog , you can stay current on valuable water safety resources such as survival swim, health and wellness, Texas Swim Academy news and more. Follow our Facebook , Twitter, and YouTube pages for even more news, updates, and tips!