If you know David and Becky Leinweber, then you know they are not the kind of people who pat themselves on the back or try to bring attention to themselves. So, when I tried to get them to say a few words about receving the Patriot Award from Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing, it was harder than getting a trophy brown trout to take a fly in Cheesman. But, I persisted (good anglers persist, right?). Here's the brief interview from David and Becky on their recent recognition.
Angler's Covey: David Leinweber, Becky Leinweber
PHWFF (left to right): Jim Williams, Gordy Rothoff, Gary Spuhler
What does receiving this award mean to you?
We feel honored and humbled. It's kind of ironic to receive an award for doing something in appreciation for the men and women who have given so much to keep us all safe in this country.
Can you tell me about the impact that PHWFF has on our community and on the veterans?
The program impacts participants similarly to how fly fishing impacts all of us: It takes them away from their challenges and worries for a period of time and allows them to just be in the moment, to focus on the fish and the fly and allow the soothing natural elements of the water and surroundings to give them a sense of peace they may not otherwise experience. And PHWFF also provides mentors who care about them, are focused on them for the day, and who do everything in their power to make it a wonderful experience. Some participants have said that these outings have been a changing point in their lives and in their healing process.
Project Healing Waters -- Colorado Springs Founding Fathers
(left to right: Gordy Rothoff, Gary Spuhler, Jim Williams)
Can you talk what makes the relationship between Angler's and PHWFF so valuable or how it enriches your lives of the life of the shop?
We live in a military community and our participation with PHWFF is one way we give back to our neighbors who have given so much to us. It's great to see them getting ready for a trip - getting their waders and chatting with one another in the shop or parking lot. And we love to see them come in to the shop for tying nights.
The proceeds of the Fly Fishing Film Tour goes toward PHWFF -- talk about how that event is so significant?
The Fly Fishing Film Tour is a series of short, exciting films that capture the fun, adventure, and thrills of fly fishing around the world. February is a great time to get the fly fishing community pumped up about the sport while benefiting this great group, so we have made the showing of the films a big community event with all of the proceeds going to our local PHWFF programs. Each year we do our best to keep it fun, uplifting, and yet purposeful. I think the most meaningful moment of the night each year is when a participant shares his story about the difference the program has made in his life.
Congratulations, David and Becky!
(all photos courtesy of Dave Herber)
Tuesday night tying night
101 Fly tying