SARASOTA (WSNN) - Combat Wounded Veteran Challenge partnered with the Sarasota Yacht Club for a day of fun, friendship and fishing.

On Saturday, a beautiful day for some fishing, the two groups got together.

Members of the Sarasota Yacht Club volunteered their boats and their time to take these veterans out for fishing, and not only was it a great haul of fish, it was a great bonding experience for all.

“Anytime I can get out of my wheelchair and get in the water, and be around other military veterans, it’s an amazing feeling, it’s free, it feels normal," wounded veteran Charlie Lemon said. 

Charlie Lemon is one of about 30 wounded veterans who participated in today's event hosted by Combat Wounded Veteran Challenge.

“Combat Wounded Veteran Challenge, we exist for a couple reasons. First thing we try is to put up challenges, where we bring in researchers doctors and folks from medical professions that do research, and prosthetic manufacturers and other folks, so that they can evaluate the veterans while their undergoing some of these extreme challenges,” Scott Gray, President and CEO of Combat Wounded Veteran Challenge said.

The organization also helps out with traumatic brain injuries and other ailments as well.

When Sarasota Yacht Club member Paul Pressl got to know Scott Gray, they decided to hold the first fishing event last year.

 “The feedback that we’ve got from Scott’s organization, Combat Wounded Veteran, is everybody enjoyed the event. And really wanted to do it again, and that’s why we’re going do it again, and we’re going to do it again after this year,” Pressl said.

The veterans really appreciated today’s event and it made them really feel connected with each other, even for just a few hours.

“Once you get back around a bunch of different veterans, it’s like a little mini reunion, and it’s like going back in time, you’re back with your fellow mates,” Brent South, a 21-year veteran said. 

The successful event is expected to return next year.