The next time you’re on the river to escape the rest of your manic life, stop for a minute and consider how lucky you really are. Chances are, if you’re reading this, you’re healthy. You might have healthy kids, a good job … a car that runs. You might have challenges, but I’d be willing to bet that your challenges pale in comparison to those faced by Joey Maxim every single day.
Don’t believe me? Check out the video above. Joey suffered traumatic injuries in a car accident several years back, and his prognosis wasn’t good. But he is recovering, despite frontal-lobe injuries that have robbed him of the ability to do the things he loves. Except for one thing. He can still fly fish. And he does. Passionately.
Joey eventually got his high-school diploma, and now he’s an apprentice fly fishing guide in Idaho. But it took a lot of effort, and he had to beat back the desire to give up, to quit living.
So the next time you’re out there fishing to get away, remember that, for some, fly fishing is more than an escape. For Joey Maxim, fly fishing is his oxygen.
— Chris Hunt