More than 150 soldiers, wounded and recovering from war, will be celebrated for their commitment to independence during the October 6 and 7 Fishing for Freedom (F3) bass tournament. These warriors, paired with volunteer boaters and some of the nation’s top bass anglers, will spend a day on the water at Long Shoal Marina (Truman Lake) to help them escape the hardships of their wounds and numerous combat deployments, to begin the process of readjusting back to everyday life.
United Labor Credit Union (ULCU) President Tim Vogler serves on the Board of Directors for the annual F3 event, and as the Public Relations Officer. “Fishing for Freedom brings together our great country’s warriors with volunteer boaters for a day of tournament bass fishing in a relaxed, fun-filled celebration of the outdoors,” said Vogler. “This event is sponsored largely by participating Union members and organizations, ULCU’s primary field of membership.” Vogler will be making a radio media tour over the next month to spread the word about and importance of support for F3.
Made possible by volunteers and paid for by local and corporate sponsors and private donations, all warrior participants receive a pack of tackle donated by sponsors, and top finishers receive trophies for their accomplishments. Dinner Saturday night, breakfast Sunday morning and barbecue lunch after the weigh-in Sunday are provided for the troops. Vogler encourages other credit unions to become involved, to help with the costs and the overall operation.
There are numerous opportunities for other credit unions to help. New tackle is needed for each of the 150 participating warriors. Gas cards and marine products for volunteer boaters are also needed. There are sponsorship opportunities for plaques and awards, as well as for food and drinks. Experienced volunteers are also needed to back trailers and launch boaters; and others are needed to help serve in other capacities throughout the weekend.
ULCU Vice President Erin Williams, an F3 committee member and volunteer, will be on the water shuttling soldiers’ family members and media the day of the contest. At least two national outdoor television programs are scheduled to document the two-day mission. “This event is near-and-dear to my heart. As the daughter of a retired union electrician, and a Vietnam War veteran, I can’t think of a more deeply rooted cause in which I could be involved,” Williams said.
Sponsors will receive tremendous personal satisfaction for helping out these brave Americans, but in addition a logo will be prominently displayed on the Fishing for Freedom Web site, event signage and fliers. With support, there is significant opportunity to have a tremendous impact on our warriors and their families. Only the generosity of caring local and regional anglers, donors, and the event’s sponsors make this event possible.