Purple Heart Recipients Fish Muskies In Eagle River

Musky Hunter Magazine
Musky Hunter Magazine

Wounded Warriors In Action is an organization that provides vets who have suffered combat injuries in defense of our country various opportunities to hunt, fish and enjoy the outdoors as a means of therapy and fellowship. In this process, wounded vets from all branches of the service join forces for a common goal.

In September, Scott Samuels, Musky Hunter Editor Emeritus Joe Bucher and a group of dedicated fishing guides invited WWIA vets to Eagle River, Wisconsin, for an all-expense paid weekend of musky fishing. This included travel, lodging, guides and even tackle. Sponsors, both local and corporate, fund the entire program, while guides and volunteers donate their services to accommodate the logistics.

“These true American heroes deserve so much,” said Bucher, one of those who contributes his time, expertise and even product sponsorship to ensure success. “It’s a genuine pleasure to be part of such a heart warming event on so many levels.”

Joe Bucher shows vets how to set the control mechanism on their reels.
Joe Bucher shows vets how to set the control mechanism on their reels.

Four muskies were boated at this event, all caught by WWIA vets including a 46-incher by Steven Kilburn of Nashville, Tennessee. Vietnam vet Tony Starcevic of St. Cloud, Minnesota, caught two muskies of 43 and 42 1/2 inches. Tyson Scott from Tyler, Texas, caught a 39 1/2-incher. In every case, these were first-time musky hunters.

“Recruiting new anglers to our great sport of musky fishing should be the goal of every one of us today,” Bucher said. “Military vets are perfectly suited for this style of fishing with all the focus on discipline and mechanics.”

Event coordinator Scott Samuels, Bucher and the local chapter of Muskies Inc. plan on conducting this event annually every September. Any vets interested in participating should visit the WWIA website: www.wwiaf.org.

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