Deb Turner had always loved fishing, but hadn’t been out for a number of years. Then she got a call from Casting for Recovery. “I’d never fly fished,” she recalled. “In fact, I think the last time that I’d gone fishing, it was with a Zebco rod for sunnies. But people kept saying that I should go.” So she did.
This summer, TU is asking “What are you REALLY fishing for?”
The answer goes well beyond the fish on the line.
In the midst of the pandemic, people have taken to the outdoors. Many have found fishing, and have discovered what anglers have long known: Standing in a river casting a fly rod may beat any therapy that money can buy.
Watch this space for stories of doctors, nurses, military veterans, and others finding solace and mindfulness while catching beautiful fish in beautiful places.
Being in the water proved cathartic. “I put on my waders and waded out into the river,” she continued. “It was so wonderful to be in the water, not getting wet. I was looking at the water, taking in the trees. I didn’t catch anything, but I didn’t care. As soon as I got home, I went to a local sporting goods store and bought some waders. I didn’t know what I was buying, but I knew I was going to get back out there.”
Not long after, Deb began volunteering for Casting for Recovery. “It’ always the same thing. I bring a rod and fish, but it’s all about the peaceful feeling of being immersed in the river. I can just stand there—‘Look at the beaver! Look at the merganser!’ Guys will call out, ‘Try over here!’ They don’t understand that I don’t care if I catch a fish. Sure, it’s wonderful to get a trout on the line. But it’s just as important to be out in on the water.”
“It’ always the same thing. I bring a rod and fish, but it’s all about the peaceful feeling of being immersed in the river.”Deb Turner
Deb’s hospital was slammed by the COVID pandemic in April 2020, and she was soon deployed from the operating room to assist COVID patients. She soon contracted the virus. “I couldn’t get my breath back, and three months later had open heart surgery. I feel so fortunate to have had the support of my friends at TU and Casting for Recovery. And an escape where I could get out into the stream. In the water, I feel like I can take a deep breath and everything else fades away.”