As posted on Tidalfish.
The motto of Military Appreciation Day is “One. Simple. THANKS”. Our mission is to take active duty military personnel out for a day on the water to fish and hopefully catch, with a side benefit forging new friendships on the boats and at the feast after the fishing. So as stated: MISSION ACCOMPLISHED! I was completely spent when the day ended Saturday and did nothing but veg out yesterday after cleaning the boat and fighting the #*%^$ traffic to get back to Richmond. But I didn’t want to let another day go by without thanking all those who made the day possible.
After two consecutive Saturdays on the bay with flat calm seas it was no surprise to anyone that we had NE winds topping 15 kts to greet us on Saturday morning. However this would not deter the fantastic, dedicated group of captains and crew who volunteered their time, boats, fuel and bait to take the troops out. As covered in our pre-event Captains meeting safety was priority one and all boats fished and returned safely with no incidents worth noting.
The MAD armada of Captains is listed below with captain’s name, boat name, boat type and species caught:
Hector Reyes – Whatever – Carolina Skiff – Spot, Croaker
Mike Avery – Seaduction – Hydrasports – bluefish, sharks
Cliff Rowe – Mulch Man – Carolina Classic – flounder
Danny Forrest – Kate Lynn Dawn – Concorde – Guests Canceled
Patrick Boyle – Infection – Grady White – Spanish, bluefish
Steve Godin – Dach Of The Bay – Parker – bluefish, croaker
Ron Alexander – Blizzard – Angler – Spanish, bluefish
Jorge Rivera – Don Jaime – Parker – Bluefish, toads
Crosby Forrest – Old Forrester – Harkers Islander – Spanish, sharks, bluefish
Wayne Smith – Sarah Kay – Sea Hunt – Flounder, bluefish
Carmelo Tuzza – no name – Sundance – Bluefish, BSB, flounder
Mike Rendenna – Love & Luck – Phoenix – Croaker
Brian Adkins – no name – Albemarle – Flounder
Bret Wesson – no name – Maycraft – Croaker, spot
William Robbins – Gonzo – Sportcraft – Cobia (54″, 53 lbs)
Bob Jones – Gal-o-mine – Grady-White – Flounder
Jack Bartell – Reel Cool – Sea Pro – Sharks, bluefish, flounder
I’d ask each captain to individually thank their crews because if I tried listing them I’d miss some but they should know their efforts were appreciated. Without captains and crews there is no fishing and of course without supporters donating services and funds events such as this are simply not possible. The following is our list of supporters and if I’ve left anyone out, please forgive me:
Wallace’s Bait And Tackle
Virginia Air Distributors
Heritage Motor Company
Shurtape Technologies, LLC
Harry Eklof & Asso.
Fleming’s Awards & Promotions
American Legion Post 320
Wawa Store #699
Central Virginia Television
Somersaults Snack Company
Sea Tow Lower Chesapeake
All supporters received a very nice plaque which we hope they will proudly display in their respective places of business. Those businesses not represented Saturday will receive theirs shortly.
Special thanks go out to Irene and Randy at Wallace’s Bait and Tackle as they worked their butts off for the second year in a row to put out a fantastic feed.
Another special thanks to Sea Tow for covering all MAD boats during the event and thankfully we did not need to call them out but knowing they were there was a relief.
Another special thanks to Nancy Rodrigues and Michael Abley who made enough cake to feed 175 people and simply dropped them off as they had other commitments.
And while too numerous to list individually the number of volunteers who helped insure our guests were taken care of that day were fantastic. We had troops who came to do nothing more than help set up and break down. Others who helped insure the families were signed in and know where to go. We even had vendors who set up canopies, such as Homes For Heroes, not to sell anything but to insure the troops knew there are services available to assist them and their families.
Finally to all our troops and their families: THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICES AND YOUR COUNTLESS SACRIFICES!
And on behalf of the Virginia Committee members I want to personally thank Scott, Bubba and Hector. Without their help and support our event would have been considerably less successful and organized. THANK YOU!!!!