Local Chapter of Non-profit Gets Veterans Out On the Water

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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA) — A nonprofit is getting veterans and first responders off dry land for a good cause.

Heroes on the Water organizes kayak fishing trips to help those who serve our community and country.

“It was a lot of fun, lot of positive characters out here,” Army Veteran Alex Lett said. “Just to come out here and enjoy the water, hang out with a bunch of like-minded individuals.”

Lett recently returned home to Northwest Arkansas after serving his time in the U.S. Army. Saturday was his first time on the water.

“We made a little race out of it in the end, and booked it back here for the picnic,” he said.

Heroes on the Water focuses on therapeutic fishing events to support local veterans, first responders, and their families.

“We furnish the kayaks, we furnish the rods and reels, and we just want to go out there and give them a good time, a good stress relief for them,” Assistant Coordinator Toby Carroll said.

The organization’s motto is paddle, fish, heal — and its part of a larger national organization. Carroll says these outdoor trips can help reduce the impact of post traumatic stress disorder.

“It’s as relaxing as you can get there on the water, there’s just something special about it. The fishing, when you see them launch in the morning, you see them kind of hesitant. When they come back, you see smiles on their faces and it’s just awesome,” Carroll said.

Carroll says word is spreading, and more veterans and their families are coming out to relax, rehabilitate and reintegrate.

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