Oct 17th found ArmyBassAngler Pros Cody Roberson, Don Bailey, Chuck Guthrie, Brent Homan, Mike Garrett & Jason Blackmon all converging on the 2009 Fishing for Freedom Tournament “Take a Wounded Soldier Fishing” on Choke Canyon Lake hosted by the San Antonio Quality Bass Club. This would be the 6th Annual Fishing for Freedom Tournament on Choke Canyon for a very special one-of-a-kind tournament designed specifically for those soldiers who have been wounded in the War on Terror regardless of branch of service or duty location.
Saturday found the team pre-positioned at the put-in with 6 of the Team’s Skeeter Boats wrapped in the Returning Heroes Home theme all staged, prep’d and ready for action. “We came down early the night before and conducted pre-combat checks and prepared all the gift bags for the soldiers that would get to fish with us. In this tournament you never know the condition of your Soldier or their ability to fish…so it’s critical we come prepared for anything to ensure they have a great time,” said Brent Homan while working with other ArmyBassAngler Pro Staff members stuffing tackle bags full of products from ArmyBassAngler sponsors. “We can’t thank our Sponsors enough for what they do to make our Mission possible. In our mind, these soldiers are all heroes and it’s really a small gesture of our appreciation and the appreciation of all the sponsors for their sacrifice and service to the country—it’s the least we can do,” said ArmyBassAnglers President Cody Roberson.
Each soldier not only received approx $750 each of tackle equipment from Castaway, Ardent, Tightlines, JaRod Jigs, Lake Fork Tackle, Oakley, Aggregate Haulers, All Seasons Feeders, FirstCommand, Images by Jay and several other personal supporters but they got the ride of their lives and opportunity to fish with ArmyBassAngler Pros aboard a High Performance Skeeter Boat. “What a thrill! After being handed a Skeeter life jacket and a quick safety brief, Cody asked me if me and my Mom if we were ready???—then he dropped the hot-foot and I was not expecting to go from zero to 55 mph in a flash! It was amazing to say the least,” stated Roberson’s Wounded Hero and partner Rich.
Each team would fish from 0900 to 1400 and do their best to catch some fish and bring in their biggest catch to weigh-in. All but one team from ArmyBassAnglers and their Wounded Heroes would weigh-in. Mike Garret & his partner would best the field with a whopping 8+ lb hawg they would land early cranking DD22s purchased from Tightlines. Securing the 2009 Fishing for Freedom Title. After the monster fish was weighed in and photographed to the hilt members of the group stated, “It really is this simple…This is what it’s all about, a great day of fishing, sharing war stories, having fun and knowing we have already won the biggest battle of all—just making it home—HOOAH!”
Following the drive thru weigh-in, Quality Bass Club hosted an incredible lunch for all the Wounded Heroes and Volunteers. “This is truly a special event and we can’t thank our sponsors and guys like ArmyBassAnglers enough for all they do,” said Tournament Director George Barns. “We’re just glad they continue to allow us to leverage our combat power to help soldiers and be a part of Quality Bass’s very special event—it truly is a Quality event,” said Roberson.
Each year Quality Bass hosts Fishing for Freedom on Choke Canyon. If you’re interested in getting involved as a volunteer, sponsor, joining Quality Bass Club or just joining the fight to SUPPORT.DEFEND.FISH. visit us at www.armybassanglers.com for more information.