Wish to Fish Foundation
Lake Fork “Wish to
Fish” Trip Sets Records
turns four on February 12, 2006, suffers from and is undergoing
treatment for Juvenile Myositis. This is a rare autoimmune disease that
affects approximately 5,000 children in the United States. JM attacks
children of all ages, causing a variety of debilitating symptoms
including: muscle weakness and pain, severe fatigue, rashes, swallowing
and digestive difficulties, lung and heart problems, vasculitic ulcers,
and calcinosis. Some children may experience a remission, while others
will battle JM their entire life, and complications from this disease
can prove fatal. Medication can help to alleviate the symptoms of JM,
but there is no known cure.
Alissa arrived at Lake Fork accompanied by her 15 month old brother,
Corey, her mother Mindy, and Paw Paw & Nana, Mark and Joanie Carpenter
on Friday evening, November 25 at Lake Fork Marina, (Foundation
Sponsor). After checking them into their room Alissa was presented from
the foundation her own Barbie Rod N’ Reel with matching life preserver.
This rod n’ reel was exactly like her previous one that had been stolen
on one of her and her Paw Paw’s earlier fishing trips. Corey was
provided a life jacket from John & JoAnne Heimgartner of Fisherman's One
Stop (Foundation Sponsor). This along with a beautiful gift basket from
Betty at Park Produce (Foundation Sponsor) only heightened Alissa’s
desire to go fishing. She wanted to go that night and try out her new
fishing equipment, but she managed to wait till the next morning.
To begin the trip she was presented a gift bag from Wave Industries,
(Foundation Sponsor). The gifts included shirts, cap, the cutest teddy
bear you’ve ever seen, and quite a few packages of Wave Worm products.
You would think that a three year old girl would first and be mostly
impressed with the teddy bear, but you don’t know Alissa. Her favorite
in the gift package were the baits, she would hold them up, caress and
hug them and tell us how big of a fish she was going to catch on them.
For lunch the crew and family returned for lunch at Moser’s Restaurant where we were met by Brian Hughes of Texas Fishing and Outdoors Show and his wife, Shanna. Brian who had first been contacted by Mark Carpenter and informed of Alissa’s condition was responsible for putting them in contact with “The Wish to Fish Foundation”. Brian and his wife presented her with a tote bag of fishing lures and goodies, which also included some children’s wildlife and fishing coloring books. Alissa couldn’t wait to start coloring the fish at lunch but this had to be done in ink for the lack of crayons, but when lunch was over she couldn’t wait to get back on the lake and catch some more fish.
The afternoon was also filled with many fish catching moments. Alissa
caught everything from crappie, catfish, bream and bar fish. The
afternoon on the lake was concluded with Alissa wanting to go fast in a
bass boat. With each “Wish to Fish” trip, the child and family are taken
out on a pontoon boat to fish. This boat is also accompanied by two
9-1-1 chase boats in case of emergencies. Alissa and mother Mindy got
their ride in my Legend LE-21 powered by a Mercury 225 Opti-Max. Only
once during the time of racing up and down the boat lane did Alissa ask
to slow down, the rest of the time she kept insisting on going faster.
The time she asked me to slow down was so I could turn around and go
fast past her Nana and Paw Paw on the pontoon boat again. I had to do
this three times for her. I must admit, she is one great little trooper,
a terrific fisher, and she captured all of our hearts that had the
pleasure of taking her and her family fishing.
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