fb83709c-b3e2-4a41-9f12-1f79ca93b38dIn the military regardless of the branch, there is oftentimes a portrayal of Lieutenants as very young and frequently lost individuals that exist only to test the patience of their unfortunate enlisted counterparts. In late March at a Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing event sponsored by the Charlottesville, Virginia program this portrayal could not have been farther from the truth

In the weeks prior to the event LT Ryan Roberts from the Judge Advocate General’s School of Law at the University of Virginia contacted Program Leader Jon Page and asked if he and five of his peers could volunteer with Project Healing Waters.  All help is always appreciated and the Lieutenants were welcomed into the fold. 

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While it was nice to have extra sets of hands it was their “can do” attitude that had the greatest impact.  With cheer, compassion, respect, and positive attitudes the lieutenants seemed to always be at the right place at the right time when a participant needed a little extra help.  This alertness and sensitivity was summarized in a thank you letter we received;

“I had an awesome time. If you can get to the Commander of the JAG school, please tell him the Lawyers that came out to help were some of the most humble, the most helpful people I have had the privilege to meet. They literally carried me down to the river, untangled my fly line, were my eyes and guided me to the fish. Thank you for the little fly boxes, and the flies, they came in handy. I decorated both the fish and the tree with them. I landed two fish.   One Rainbow and one smallmouth bass.  There is a monster in that river I hooked him he put up a good fight, he bent my rod to point I thought it would break. He broke the leader at the thickest part. Looking forward to the next trip.”

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While the support from the JAG School is appreciated it is important to note that they represent the greater community in Central Virginia.  Mossy Creek Fly Fishing provided the venue at Suzie Q Farms, Jeff Greendyk from the Charlottesville Orvis taught fly patterns ahead of the event and then provided a few extra patterns to the participants so that they had a formidable fly arsenal.   The service members and civilians at Rivanna Station also provided an immense amount of support as did Sheetz and Subway who provided the food and drinks.  In such a caring and giving community the list of people to thank becomes extensive and we think that is a good problem to have.

suzie-q-charlottesville-2Stay up-to-date with the Charlottesville, Virginia Program by following them on Facebook: Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing Charlottesville, VA Program