Veteran support group holds fishing tournament at Lake Murray

By Thomas Grant Jr.

Recognizing and supporting service members and first responders though the sport of bass fishing.

It’s one of the goals of the Armed Forces Fishing League, a national non-profit organization established to assist these service veterans to various resources, benefits, and programs to help their everyday lives.

Air Force technical sergeant Austin Kitterman, the director of the South Carolina AFFL branch, said this is accomplished by seeking out membership through “fishing for fellowship” and “connecting warriors with the great outdoors”.

The local chapter held its second bass fishing tournament at Lake Murray on May 21. Launching from Larry Koon Landing, a total of five teams competed for the top prize during a busy day on the waters.

Coming away with the top prize was the team of Thomas Fulmer and Brian Portlock. The team hauled in five bass fish weighing 16.23 pounds, including a 4.93 catch, to claim the top total and big bass side pot for a total of $410.

Local chapter president Austin Kitterman placed second with a bag weighing 10.37 pounds. Team of His Glory Outdoors led by Bobby Edwards and James Chitterden (10.37 pounds) placed third and Bo Murray and Shawn Lusk (6.91 pounds) finished in fourth place.

Outdoors, which also provides volunteer assistance and will hold a Veteran and First Responder event on Sept. 9 at Dreher Island, donated a Lew’s rod and reel combo set to the last-place team of Dean Plunkett and Andrew Cass. Both Tactical Fishing Company, The Crazy Hick Bait Company and Simpson’s Ace Hardware all contributed bait for the event.

The AFFL will hold its next fishing event June 24 at the Cooper River in Charleston. The organization is seeking additional participation from interested veterans and First Responders.

Visit the Facebook Page or or contact Kitterman at (502) 902-0480.

Feature photo: All teams and prizes from left to right, Austin Kitterman, Dean Plunkett (Holding Tactical Fishing Company and Crazy Hick Bait Co. Bait Pack), Andrew Cass (Holding Simpson’s Ace Hardware – Sumter Tackle Pack), Brian Portlock, Bo Morris (Holding Lew’s Rod and Reel Combo donated by For His Glory Outdoors), Shawn Lusk, Bobby Edwards, Thomas Fulmer, James Chittenden.

(All Photos by Austin Kitterman)