Ft. Campbell soldiers take part in Kentucky Lake Wounded Warriors event
KENTUCKY LAKE — The waters of Kentucky Lake provide a soothing outdoor atmosphere for nearly two dozen men and women who aren't used to peace and quiet. For one weekend, 20 Ft. Campbell soldiers trade in their military uniforms for fishing attire - hoping to clear their thoughts of time spent on the front lines.
"It allows us to get out and do things that we don't normally get an opportunity to do," said Billy Onks.
He's a 20 year army veteran. He has six tours of duty under his belt and has witnessed some heartbreaking things, but he said he wants to create new, happier memories.
"It means a lot that someone has extended this opportunity to the wounded warriors," Onks.
Mark Minor joined Onks on the water. "Just being out here doing this - get away from the hustle and bustle everywhere else so it's pretty good," Minor said.
He's a 31 year-old Army specialist and was called to serve in Iraq several times. He said a day on the water gets rid of some of those sleepless nights.
"I've seen a lot more things than I, most people would ever imagine. I hope a lot more people don't have to see it. But that's probably why I do this," Minor said.
It's heroes like Onks and Minor why the Paducah River City Bass Club planned this adventure. Organizer Steve Alvarado served in Vietnam. He said he didn't get much help returning home so he wanted to pay it forward.
"How do I benefit from this? It's enormous. I go home and sleep better," Alvarado said.
And the soldiers can feel a better knowing someone is watching out for them.