The Fourth Annual WOHW Sport Fishing Tournament just upgraded this non-profit organization. The fleet is back and the results are in.
NEWPORT BEACH – The 2021 War Heroes on Water (WHOW) Sport Fishing Tournament was held October 1-5 along the Southern California coastline to Catalina Island to raise funds for alumni combat casualties and the nonprofit Freedom Alliance.
On October 2, 38 of the West Coast’s top sport fishing vessels lined up to create a more than a mile long parade just outside Newport Beach to begin the fourth annual tournament and prepare for 48 hours. on the water. The tournament ended on October 4 in Avalon for the weigh-in, the closing ceremony and the awards ceremony.
2021 has hosted the most ships so far; only 12 vessels participated in 2020, 18 in 2019 and 12 in 2018.
The veterans enjoyed a festive start with hundreds of guests celebrating their departure and the start of the tournament action.
Ryan Schramm participated in the WHOW tournament for the first time this year; he owns and pilots his 40 super rigged Cabo Flybridge, Hot rail. Schramm moored his boat in Dana Point harbor, next to the boat of WHOW tournament director Rod Halperin, so he landed his invitation to the tournament.
“When he [Halperin] asked me to participate earlier this year, I didn’t even have to think twice, âsaid Schramm. “I had heard about and seen some of the marketing for the tournament in the past, and I knew as soon as he asked me that I was in it.”
Schramm’s yacht hosted six crew members, including two veterans, his father, two friends and himself. Schramm, his father and his friends oversaw the accommodation, guidance and food of the veterans throughout the 48 hour experience.
“Every effort is made to show them [the veterans] what a great trip looks like and what we are constantly experiencing, âsaid Schramm. âThe goal is to show them the best possible trip. It’s about them, making sure they get all the fish back and that they are well fed.
Veterans come from across the country and enter this tournament without really knowing what fishing on the West Coast is all about.
The tournament is not limited to a specific locality, and yachts are allowed to venture into other towns. Schramm and his crew caught eight bluefin tuna, one amberjack and a good mix of different small fish from San Clemente to Catalina.
âI was very impressed with the tournament as a whole, from the opening and closing ceremonies to the veterans,â said Schramm. âThe guys we had on our boat felt like they could have been my lifelong friends. It was an unforgettable experience that I will want to participate in as long as I am invited.
Twelve members of the WHOW fleet stood ready to bring their biggest catch to the Avalon Green Pleasure Pier. Participants took advantage of a unique opportunity to experience the aspiration of many west coast fishermen to have their fish weighed and photographed at the iconic fishing site.
For more than three hours, tourists, Avalon residents, and WHOW yacht crews and veterans observed and celebrated each yacht’s entry into the pier, collecting 21 of the tournament’s largest bluefin tuna to weigh and document. .
But the tournament had already broken records before the launch of the first yacht, with the number of veterans participating, the number of sport fishing yachts, the number of sponsors, the number of donors and the dollars raised to support the recovery process and the needs of wounded veterans and their families.
Collectively, these accomplishments launched the tournament to its new status as the largest non-profit sport fishing tournament in the United States.
Anthony Hsieh, originally from Taiwan, founded WHOW in 2018 after coming up with the idea while at sea in Cabo San Lucas on a fishing trip with seven veterans who told Hsieh how great he was. beneficial for them to be on the water.
âI am incredibly surprised with how I feel and feel,â Hsieh said during the opening ceremony. âThe 100 vets who are here, thank you. But you, 100 of you, are going to be in good hands for the next 48 hours, along with 38 generous and patriotic Americansâ¦ if I could just hear it for the vets, man!
WHO has raised a record $ 1.35 million for wounded veterans and is on its way to becoming one of the largest water therapy programs in the country. In addition, it is currently the largest non-profit fishing tournament in the world.
The 2021 fleet, along with the live weigh-in and other tournament information, can be found at https://warheroesonwater.com/.
Live tournament updates are also available on YouTube at https://warheroesonwater.com/2021tournament/.