Wounded Warrior/Military Appreciation Day - Low Budget but High Impact Program
7/15/2013 10:43 AM
The second Wednesday of each month ushers in a low budget but high impact program the folks at the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission’s John E. Pechmann Fishing Education Center started over four years ago. We started out by opening the gate to a handful of Wounded Warriors who did not have a suitable place or the equipment to learn the mechanics of fly fishing. A little networking with Ft. Bragg’s Warrior Transition Battalion and Womack Army Medical Center revealed that any kind of fishing was great therapy for soldiers with obvious and not-so-obvious challenges related to the rigors of war. We have since expanded the invitation to anyone with a military connection to include active duty,reserves, National Guard, retired military, VA card holders or N.C. Handicapped Sportsmen and their family members. Show up between the hours of 1-5 p.m. on the 2nd Wednesday of the month and you will be welcome.
The July 10 event brought out a good mix of our entire target audience. Some come early, some come late, some can only stay for an hour or two. All come to experience a change of pace.
These outings make for some great family time. The Pechmann Center ponds hold a variety of warm water fish, all of which are available for “catch-and-release” fishing.
Once the crowd thinned out several of our volunteers held a catfish fishing tournament. Like I said in the beginning,the Wounded Warrior / Military Appreciation program is low budget and high impact. The Commission provides the venue but without the experience,dedication and just plain work of our volunteers, this program would be hit or miss at best.
Our next Wounded Warrior / Military Appreciation Day is scheduled for August 14. (Always the second Wednesday of the month from 1-5 p.m.) Lots of fun and great opportunity for family participation. Hope to see you at the next one!
By: Al Kittredge