(Posted on other site as well)
Hello guys! Jarrett here. Recently at The Sacramento ISE show I was introduced to a young angler named Jared Mitchell. Many of you might remember Jared as the 16 year old angler who along with his stepfather Mike Moreno struck a barely submerged pipe in the Delta last September. Thankfully he was airlifted right after the accident (which the motor flipped back in the boat and nearly cut his hand/arm off) and today is still working through major physical therapy in addition to having completed two major surgeries and another one on the way.
I have only spoken to Jared once (at the show) but came away inspired by his story and his motivation to hopefully return to the water by late summer. I learned that he is a straight A student in high school and one heck of an angler actually earning his first 1099 last year! Speaking with Jared reminded me of my motivation as a kid trying to break into the fishing industry, eating and sleeping bass fishing!
All of us anglers fish for many reasons, some for fun, some for the competitive drive and some for food. However among these items Jared will also be fishing for therapy. I cannot imagine how scary it would be to get back into the boat after the tragedy that took place. In my opinion fishing is a strong therapy, several years back when going through cancer I felt like my healing time was tenfold on the water and no doubt it can be a positive motivator for him as well.
Here is where I feel as fellow sportsmen we might be able to help out. When the accident occurred Jared lost all of his rods and reels along with almost all his tackle...completely eliminated, nothing left. I can’t imagine the hopeless feeling of having all your equipment gone in an instant. One minute he is pre-fishing for a tournament, the next he is waking up in the hospital. Rumor has it the first thing Jared asked about was if his tackle/rods are OK! The purpose of this post is to see if anybody has any equipment laying around that they wouldn’t mind donating to a great cause. Rather it is a lure, bag of plastics or a rod, am certain that anything would be a great addition at this point.
I know firsthand how sportsmen band together for great causes as I have been on the receiving end before. I also know that this website is full of outstanding people who simply enjoy paying it forward when opportunities present themselves. With the above facts I would also need some input from everybody on potential drop off sites such as tackle stores in northern California etc. I did speak with Karen Hartung tonight (Grandma of Jared) and she said if anybody had anything they would like to donate that they would be welcome to drop off at her work (Delta Marine Sales).
Please do not read this post as a pity post as I do not intend for it to be. I just know that when going through tough times in life it's great being surrounded by great people who help keep your mind off your problems. Sometimes learning to harness your negative energy and turn it into positive can lead to great healing.
I'm going to kick this thread off by donating two St. Croix 7 foot Legend Xtreme rods. Anybody have any suggestions to help this kid out or have anything they would like to donate?
Thanks for everyone’s time and effort in reading this post. Jared if you read this just know that you have a great testimony to share with others. There are plenty of fishermen who would love to have you back on the water soon. Enjoy your 2nd chance at life, we are the lucky ones!