By Lynne Beauchamp, firstname.lastname@example.org
Heat and humidity did not stop veterans from enjoying a day of fishing, food and comradery during the annual Heroes on the Water event hosted by the Chelsea American Legion, Post 31.
The event took place on Father’s Day and Post 31 arranged for transportation to bring veterans from the Ann Arbor VA to take part in the day at its location on Cavanaugh Lake in Chelsea.
To assist the veterans with kayaking and fishing techniques, several volunteers and Legion members were on hand including Professional Walleye Fisherman, Mark Martin.
“I’m happy to be here and looking forward to having a good time with everybody,” Martin said to the veterans before launching a boat onto Cavanaugh Lake, fully equipped for the day and joined by two of the veterans.
Army Veteran Brad Boerst was among Martin’s group and caught several fish on the outing including several “keeper” rock bass.
Individual members of the Michigan Kayak Association provided kayaks for the event and offered guidance to the individual veterans who wished to kayak. Additionally, Cavanaugh Lake resident and neighbor of Post 31, John Moschet provided his pontoon boat for rides to those veterans who wished a leisurely and shaded ride on the Lake. Primary sponsorship of this year’s event was provided by Chelsea Lumber, according to American Legion, Post 31-member George Reidel.
Reidel said Post 31 hosts events like this as a way to give back to its fellow comrades.
“The American Legion is more than just an organization,” said Reidel.
The American Legion Post 31 began hosting Heroes on the Water in 2011 and plans to continue the tradition next year, according to Legion member Craig Maier.