Mike Ryan wanted to help fellow wounded veterans have the ability to get out on the water and fish, whether in a kayak or not. His organization helps ensure that veterans that cannot afford or do not have the access to quality fishing gear and tackle are shown a little love in return for their service. Operation Angler Strength was born and has helped numerous vets be able to fish, and puts on an annual kayak fishing tournament in the Austin, Texas area.
ACK and KATS have partnered with Operation Angler Strength this year to help them raise funds and put on a their biggest event yet. Hosted at Abel’s on the Lake, the award ceremony and fundraiser was a whole lot of fun with live music, burger sliders, and 74 anglers hoping to win some of the awesome prize packages put together by generous sponsors including Mojo Sportswear, Cabela’s, Bass Assasin, Bending Branches, Dizm Eco Eyewear, Hook1, Rio Products, Yak Gear, ACK, KATS, TFO, Schlotzsky’s, Hook 1, Premier Party Central, and more!.
Seventeen veterans held their own division in Saturday’s tourney while the Fisherman’s division totaled 57 anglers. Rodney Bronson (veteran) took first with a whopping 102.5 inch stringer. The next limit came in at 94.75 inches with Brent Clevlen taking 1st in the fisherman’s division. Robert Leon took home big bass with a stout 25.75 inch big bass. Robert Dockery has taken the lead in all three leaderboards (Overall Series, Kayak Angler of the Year, and King of the Fish).
See the full results here.
The fundraising raffle was a success. With an Old Town Predator kayak, a Yeti Tundra 125, and many other awesome prizes, Operation Angler Strength was able to raise over $4,000!
The next KATS event will be held on Lake Sam Rayburn in the Houston, Texas area. For more info, visit www.fishkats.com.