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Fishing Rodeo reels in wounded warriors
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Soldiers Manuel Campos, left, Tyler Jernigan, Eric Bjerkland, Dereck Wisnieski and Braden Broussard show off their catch Saturday during the second annual Wounded Warrior Fishing Rodeo at Fort McAllister Marina.

Gratitude — and the faint smell of fresh fish and saltwater — filled the air last Saturday afternoon at Fort McAllister Marina as the catch from more than 50 boats with crews of soldiers was hauled in to be weighed.

It was the second annual Wounded Warrior Fishing Rodeo, hosted by the Fort McAllister Sport Fishing Club, that took more than 100 area soldiers who were wounded in combat out for a day of inshore and offshore fishing.

“We wanted to support our troops, because they supported us and our families. We wanted to give back to them with a special day, one they will remember forever,” event volunteer Cindy Udinsky said.

Kenneth McCain was one of the soldiers who enjoyed the day on the water.

“I think it is awesome, I really do. These boat captains and owners come out here out of the goodness of their heart,” McCain said. “They paid for the fuel, bait and provided everything else, just to take us out fishing. That is awesome. I had a great time.”

And the soldiers weren’t the only ones to enjoy themselves.

“This is our second year doing this, and I look forward to doing this again next year,” boat captain. Jodi Laing said. “It was a great day.”

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