Texoma fishing charter honors first responders on 9/11

Published: Sep. 11, 2020 at 6:28 PM CDT
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LAKE TEXOMA (KXII) - A Lake Texoma fishing charter is honoring first responders in a special way.

Every year on September 11, they take a group of firefighters, EMTs and law enforcement officers on a fishing trip.

It’s a more than three decades long tradition started by Striper Express Owner Bill Carey.

He said they’ve been doing this fishing trip since 1983 and for around seven years on September 11.

“It’s our way of thanking them, honoring them and we celebrate what they do," Carey said.

“9/11. Something to do special with the guys, with firefighters. Remember, never forget and try to have some brotherhood on the water as well," said The Colony Fire Dept. Driver Michael Powers.

Powers is one of around a dozen firefighters from The Colony who came to Lake Texoma to fish Friday morning.

“So this is a great way to do it if we’re off duty, to spend some time together. Be on the water, have some laughs and remember our fallen brothers and sisters," Powers said.

Their crew joined around 40 first responders and law enforcement officers in the annual fishing tournament.

“These are fine people. They risk their lives every day," Carey said.

Carey said it’s a way for them to kick back and enjoy being on the lake together, putting the burdens of their day to day jobs aside.

“When we are social distancing, they are not. They are in the trenches. They’re the people that do the job that lets us have our way of life," Carey said.

“All the trials and tribulations that we go through on duty, it’s nice to come out here on the off duty and just have some fun and let our hair down. And relax and have a plain good time," Powers said.

Three-hundred forty-three firefighters were among the nearly 3,000 lives lost on this day 19 years ago.

Powers said he and his fellow firefighters choose to spend this day together.

“The significance of it is beyond words. The mentality that we have and we say it a lot, but the fire department especially means it. Never forget," Powers said. “And for us to come out here it shows our appreciation, as well as a bonding experience for us.”

The group was treated to lunch afterwards and they announced the winners of the fishing tournament.

They caught around 375 fish total this year.

The first-place winner was around seven pounds and 14 ounces.

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