The Third Annual War Heroes on Water (WHOW) Sportfishing Tournament, held October 1-4, WOULD have been described as a spectacular success, were this a typical year. However, despite unprecedented challenges and safety protocols, this year’s tournament provided a deeply therapeutic experience for 29 combat-wounded veterans, and provided an outlet for Southern California residents to express their deep appreciation for the sacrifices made by the veteran community.
Twelve yachts, complete with captains and crews, fell in behind the lead yacht, Cielo Mare, for a parade through Newport Harbor. They were joined by more than 60 local boats in their celebratory procession, along with countless local residents running out of their homes waving flags to honor our veterans. After this patriotic and moving display, the twelve teams left the harbor for a two-day fishing adventure in the waters off Santa Catalina Island.
Advanced EO owners Bruce Ferguson, John Le Blanc & Geoff Miller again donated the use of their yacht, the Sea Horse, with fuel & captain, for the weekend’s tournament. Team Sea Horse landed some impressive fish: Enrique caught a 7.2lb calico bass, and Drew landed a 26.2lb dorado. Drew also caught and released one of four striped marlins brought in that day. Overall, the Sea Horse took home quite an impressive list of honors: 1st place for Top Boat, 2nd place for Most Qualifying Points, 1st place for Most Weight Points, and the coveted Ron Ashimine Top Angler Award presented to Drew M.!