Area fisherman take veterans out on the lakes

Published 05/24 2014 06:59PM

Updated 05/24 2014 07:20PM

WINNECONNE, Wis. (WFRV) - A group of professional walleye anglers treated around 50 veterans to a care-free day of fishing Saturday off the shores of Lake Winneconne.

This is the second year for the so called "fishing with vets" event. Organizer Jeff Nuechterlein said he got the idea to thank the men and women who have served our country while watching the television a couple of years ago.

"The least that I can do is take them out fishing," Nuechterlein said. "Show them our gratitude and honor them for a day here on memorial day weekend."

After a morning colorguard ceremony, veterans were paired up with professionals and hit the water.

"It's great, really great," said Clifford Williams, former US Army Reservist. Williams and his father-in-law, also a veteran, spent the day competeing to see who would catch the bigger fish.

Former US Marine Danny Steffans, now professional walleye angler, said that when he came back from serving the country in the late seventies, the publics tone when it comes to supporting and thanking troops was very different and somewhat disheartening.

Not wanting history to repeat itself, Steffans said volunteering for Saturday's event was a no brainer.

"I decided at that time that I would not ever let that happen again," Steffans said. "And I think that's what today's all about for me, is to take John here fishing."

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