It is called fishing, not catching!!! So, we didn't land any sharks THIS time. However it was an amazing trip with 8 veterans who will forever share their bond of Padre Island.
Story By: John Henderson, Legacy Farmstead
The third annual Heroes & Hammerheads Shark Fishing event put on by Legacy Farmstead non-profit organization out of Boerne, TX, did not disappoint. Envision camping under the stars, hearing the waves crash against the sand, listening to the sounds of musicians around a campfire, sharing stories with your brothers, and fishing for some larger than life sharks.
Friday morning everyone was pumped to make the trek down to the Padre Island National Seashore where our adventure began. Once we entered the National Park we traveled 40 miles down the beach to an isolated peaceful spot where not even cell phones worked!
We stepped out of our vehicles and breathed in that ocean air, felt the warm breeze blowing, heard the waves crashing, and paused in the silence to take it all in as we knew we were about to have an incredible weekend ahead where lives would be changed.
Right away our team went to work to get our camps set up. The very first thing we always do is fly our American flag high. From getting tents assembled to digging the fire pit everyone had a task. Some guys got shark bait rigged up and ran out in the water by kayaks while others prepped the rigs and poles. We had an incredible barbecue team made up of San Antonio area fireman that cooked a wonderful meal. At sunset Isaac Jacob, a country music artist from New Braunfels, TX, played acoustic by the campfire. As people introduced themselves and began getting to know one another and their individual stories, the crashing waves sealed immediate bonds between brothers who served for the same reason at different times and different places with one goal in mind.
Saturday kicked off with breakfast over an open flame and some sunrise fishing in the surf. The guides prepared our crawfish boil lunch on the beach. The afternoon was spent with more fishing while hiding from the sun, enjoying the breeze. Our bbq team fed us like kings once again with brisket they smoked all day and elk sausage. We had another amazing night sunset fishing and hanging around the campfire listening to acoustic music from Zach Nytomt, a country music artist from Ft. Worth, TX.
Sunday morning is always hard. Once you’ve spent a couple days in the great outdoors with men you’ve grown to love and respect for their courage, bravery, and struggles they’re individually dealing with, it is difficult to part ways.
From the salt water and sand to the sunsets and sunrises, the rhythm and sounds of the ocean is all therapeutic. The goal of this event is to bring veterans and first responders together, roughing it for a few days, in an incredible beach atmosphere away from the hustle and bustle of daily life. Letting the natural bonds and connections made here open the willingness to share their stories, struggles and triumphs.
If just one man leaves feeling more empowered, and ready to take on the world around them after this weekend, we know we did our jobs. All we do is provide the atmosphere; the group of men who join us provide the impact on each other without even knowing it.