Of the numerous legitimate programs aimed at showing appreciation to military veterans, I’ve not seen one that didn’t deserve applause for honoring those who’ve defended this nation. However, I recently encountered one that seems to hit on several good points—the Lew’s American Hero Program.
Essentially, the U.S. tackle manufacturer offers a line of value-priced products—including the American Hero Baitcast combo, which one Best Combo at ICAST—that go for $29.99-$89.99. Profits are earmarked for the American Hero Program, which pays for rod/reel combos that are given to U.S. Military veterans for use at various appreciation days, as well as for their ongoing personal use.
Noting that Lew’s doesn’t want vets fishing with loner gear, company President Gary Remensnyder said: “We’re not just giving them a day on the water; we’re giving them the ability to keep on fishing,”
Quick look at the high points:
- Good quality at affordable pricing allows more folks to enjoy the sport without pinching the budget.
- Directing proceeds from sales offers an option to straight donations that’s likely to get a few more folks involved.
- Leaving rod/reel combos in hands that once the held U.S. government-issued weapons that helped defend our freedom to do things like afford fishing tackle is pretty cool.
“Our measure of success is not how much money we raise; it’s not how much PR we get,” Remensnyder said. “Our measure of success is how many vets we can get on the water.”