Let There Be Peace on the Water and Joy in My Heart – Reflections of Women Fishing in Alaska

Hi my name is Lorry Ann Flux and I am an active duty veteran of 35 years. I am serving as an Army Combat Nurse at Fort Wainwright Alaska. I was honored to participate in a fly fishing trip of a lifetime. I flew into Anchorage from Fairbanks on Sunday, August 13th, and was picked up by my friend Ms. Leslie, Then Jan Schnorr picked us up and the adventure started. Off to the Kenai Peninsula we go; I was like a little kid in a candy store, I just couldn’t believe that I am in Alaska and getting ready to fly fish with some really neat women for the next two days.

We arrived at our destination, Great Alaskan Adventure Lodge, and it surely was top-notch accommodations to say the least. Sunday we had a wonderful meal and went over Monday’s itinerary. Sunday before dinner we were able to meet our fishing guide “Dave” who was from Oregon and I knew that it was gonna be a great day. Sunday night I slept with “one eye open” because it felt like Christmas; I was so excited.

Monday we hit the Kenai River and it was absolutely stunning. The glacial water was a milky blue and so different from any river I’ve ever seen. The eagles soared above us and pecked at salmon carcasses that littered the shores. We fished all day, we caught fish all day, we laughed, we told stories and fished some more. Whenever I get on the water, I am in my element; it is peaceful, serene and definitely healing “those who serve”! We caught silvers and some trout and it was nothing short of phenomenal.

Lorry fighting one of several kings

The next day, we fished the Kasilof River. I caught 3 King Salmon over 35 pounds each that day, don’t know how, never have before, but what a fight. Both Jan and Leslie “had my back” and would say, “do you need any help”, and persistent me, I said no because at that moment, everything was quiet, perfect and again, healing. We could not keep the kings because season ended at the end of July.

But it’s not just about catching fish; it is about the sense of belonging, the camaraderie amongst other human beings, about how others volunteer countless hours to help aid in our journey of getting better day by day. An old friend once told me “not all war wounds are visible”; he is exactly right. After combat I have become a more humble person, I live every day to the fullest, but I will tell you PHWFF has saved some of my brothers and sisters in arms lives, (literally). For that I will be forever grateful to be part of a wonderful organization and feeling as “I belong” and I am finally “home”. Thank you PHWFF and thank you for all the volunteers. God Bless and tight lines! MAJ Lorry Ann Flux, US Army Combat Nurse.

Group photo with Great Alaska Adventure Lodge owner and manager

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