My Wife Encouraged Me to Keep Going… 3-18-2015

Heroes on the Water Spec.Brett RhodesRedfishCommitted to restoring warriors and their families.


Especially my kids noticed the positive residual effects of kayak fishing.”

 Randy Hay is an active duty sergeant based at Joint Base Lewis-McChord. And like many warriors, he strives to live a positive life in spite of bouts of anxiety and a diagnosis of PTSD. Looking for a way to gain some peace and perspective, Randy was intrigued by the posting he saw on the Northwest Kayak Anglers website, so he sent an email to Heroes on the Water asking about an upcoming event. He received an immediate response and signed up to go.

 That was in April of 2014. It only took one event for Randy to be “hooked.”

 “I was surprised at how accommodating everyone was. They were very organized, and very kind, welcoming everyone as they came in.”

 Randy went on to say:

“There were a couple of wounded vets and the volunteers really went the extra mile to help those guys get in the kayaks and on the water. Everyone made sure that we and our families felt welcome.” 
I’ve Been to Every Single Event Since.”

Randy was positively changed from a single event.

 “Being on the water in a kayak, with no noise, no motor, was soothing and relaxing. It calms your mind and takes you to a peaceful spot. The residual effects were noticeable. My kids particularly saw the effects. In fact, my wife encouraged me to keep going because of the positive effects.”

 “Every time I’m on the water in my kayak, it transcends me into a state of mind that makes me feel relaxed and comfortable. It transcends me to a better place. I forget about all the things that I’ve seen.”

 Randy immediately aligned with HOW to help other warriors.

 “I knew Heroes on the Water was something I wanted to continue to do. It’s something I will associate my name with, so I volunteered to be a guide.”

 Now Randy spends his time at HOW events ensuring that warriors are comfortable with their kayaks, have the right equipment, and feel as welcome as he did his first event.

 “I have extra gear and am happy to loan my equipment to anyone who needs it. We work diligently to ensure each warrior has the best kayak for his or her needs.”

 For Randy, Heroes on the Water gave him something he could not get in other therapeutic environments – peace and calming coupled with camaraderie.

 “It helps to know you are not the only one, that there are people with the same diagnosis. It also helps to know you don’t have to talk about anything you don’t want to, and can enjoy the peace and beauty of kayak fishing.”



Warriors like Randy Hay are the lifeblood of Heroes on the Water. We are here to serve them, and in turn they continue to serve other warriors. You can help by donating, volunteering or even starting a chapter! Through your support, together we can serve more warriors who desire to experience the calm, peaceful feeling of kayak fishing.


Commit to Be the Difference

Meet the Pedal Pirate…
Meet Freddy, who in his words “decided to do something crazy” and ride his bike down to South Florida, do a lot of fishing, and visit as many Heroes on the Water chapters as possible on the way to the EFKT Battle in the Bahamas in April. He’s doing this to support our warriors, and is raising funds for HOW along the way. Thank you Freddy! We are so appreciative of your amazing efforts, and support you on your journey! Pedal on, brother!
You can learn more about Freddy on his Facebook page or check out his web page to keep up with his adventures!

Cast for a Hero…

Our nation’s warriors face a new battle as they return home. You can give them and their families peace and hope for a brighter future by making a donation today. Your gift provides the HOW kayak fishing program to warriors at no charge to them or their families.

Please #CastforaHero and donate today so we can continue to serve warriors who so valiently served us.