Line Up for Wounded Veterans!
Bring your patriotism and wave American flags to cheer on wounded veterans and their families headed into Canyon Park at 10 a.m. this Saturday, July 22 for Operation Float a Soldier’s (OFAS) Lake Beach Event.
OFAS provides lunch, boating, jet ski and fishing-and-lake activities for active and retired military personnel injured in the line of duty or suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Parade route runs along Canyon Park Road between Brookshire Brothers and the park itself on the northside of the lake. Staging point is at FM 306 rest stop southwest of Whitewater Ampitheater. Participants are asked to arrive at 9:30 a.m.
Accompanying military personnel and their families in the parade are OFAS volunteers, motorcycle clubs and a flotilla of cars driven by area residents.
Canyon Lake’s OFAS is a volunteer-run nonprofit 501(c)(3) ministry.
An OFAS event in June drew over 119 veterans and family members. Some 64 residents volunteered.
According to floatasoldier.org, the group’s mission “is to improve the lives and lift the spirits of wounded soldiers and their families through recreational outings on beautiful Canyon Lake. We hope to nourish the souls of our injured heroes by providing them with a respite from grueling rehab and the psychological struggles caused by their injuries of war.”
Residents who’d like to volunteer their registered and insured boats to take veterans and their families on non-alcoholic cruises around the lake can email Faron Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To donate funds, visit floatasoldier.org.
Also listed on the site are email addresses for Wes Garnett, co-founder; Seth Warnick, co-founder; Chris Brodeur, operations; Denise Warnick, gifts and entertainment; Deedee Scut, volunteer services; Nick Yushmanov, water patrol; Ernie Dominguez, director of development; Kenny Marples, grill master; and Stephan Scutt, vessel maintenance supervisor; and Faron Smith, marketing director.
OFAS owns three retired pontoon boats from Canyon Lake Marina, but the retired vessels are expensive to maintain. The group is trying to raise funds for a tritoon.
Smith says he’ll be hard to miss day-of in his black Dodge truck flying an American flag and one from each branch of the military hanging out the back of his truck.