Canyon Lake non-profit Operation Float a Soldier (OFAS), which provides boating, jet ski and fishing-and-lake activities for thousands of active and retired military personnel injured in the line of duty or suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), canceled all four its summer events yesterday citing logistical issues created by COVID-19.
Its board of directors announced their decision on Facebook Wednesday, and asked supporters to instead donate to Camp Hope with the PTSD Foundation of America. The Houston-area facility offers interim housing for combat veterans.
“We all agonized over and waited until the last moment to finalize the decision,” said organizer Faron Smith. “…canceling all four of the OFAS summer events was nothing less than excruciating for the board members of OFAS. We hope that everyone understands that we do so with a heavy heart as well as wanting to keep safety in mind.”
OFAS has canceled only one event over its last 15 years. It also welcomed family members and provided lunches for guests.
Among its concerns were finding a bus that met social-distancing requirements, venues limiting groups to 10 individuals, health concerns for veterans with combat injuries, and the impossibility of asking guests to wear masks in July and August Texas heat.
“We understand that it is nothing short of disappointing for not only the guests that will not be able to attend but it is also disappointing to the volunteers that choose to serve those that served us,” he said.
OFAS also stages parades along the Forst Sam side of Jacobs Creek Road to greet arriving families.