WINSTON-SALEM, NC (July 17): Operation North State is so excited to introduce the Anglers’ Casting Hope Challenge – collectively, all anglers throughout North Carolina and the general public too can change some lives and more importantly save some lives.  The Anglers’ Casting Hope Challenge has been in planning stages for several months as to an upcoming project to help raise awareness regarding the tragic number of veterans’ lives being lost daily in the US to suicide. 


The long-awaited updated numbers supporting the tragic number of 20 veterans committing suicide daily in the United States came out recently; this revised figure has been requested for years by critics. This heartbreaking number has been well-known within the veterans and military communities for years.  However, outside these communities, probably 97% of the general public has never heard of or taken these numbers seriously but it’s time to get them on board.


For the past four years, Operation North State annually hosts numerous Top Shelf Fishin’ Festivals throughout the state; to include 7 in 2016.  Host boaters provide their equipment and expertise treating Wounded Warriors and Disabled Vets to a quality day of fishing on some of the state’s premier lakes and coastal waters.  During the Festivals, these Special Americans often speak of their battles with depression, thoughts of suicide, loss of combat buddies to suicide and images of these losses they can’t escape. Three wounded warriors have openly stated that the ONS Fishin’ Festivals have pulled the gun away from their head…. Two wounded warriors surprisingly made this claim to the audience during the 2016 Kickoff Meeting at Tilley Harley Davidson in Salisbury back in February. ONS wants to do its part to assist in getting the word out to the general public as to the TRAGIC LOSS of 20 Veterans committing suicide every day! The Wounded Warriors and DVets that are involved in the Festivals are appreciative of ONS’s knowledge efforts to make others aware of this tragedy. They have asked ONS to get this message out to the general public; – thus, the Anglers’ Casting Hope Challenge. 


Why the Challenge other than the pre-mentioned awareness project? Demands for ONS’ Festivals has exploded; dozens of Wounded Warriors and DVets are being turned away for each Fishin’ Festival therefore losing opportunities to help.  Recreational therapy “fishing” works! – It’s needed! It’s changing and saving lives.  The Challenge will help bring in much needed funds to add Fishin’ Festivals throughout the state in 2017.  And lastly, the Challenge will raise funding to purchase much needed fishing gear – especially provide rod & reel combos to wounded warriors and DVets that currently don’t own quality fishing equipment.  Dozens of the Wounded Warriors and DVets that fish in our Top Shelf Fishin’ Festivals have informed ONS that their confidence grows in re-engaging with the general public as a result of attending our Fishin’ Festivals, they are starting to go fishing on their own in farm ponds, creeks and lakes in their respective communities.  But, many lack fishing equipment to do this along with their kids, wives, caregivers, etc. – all of them lack fishing equipment too.


The current need from the North Carolina media is to help get the word out regarding the revised veterans’ suicide numbers while Operation North State plans a press release specific to the Anglers’ Casting Hope Challenge on September 1, 2016.  There’s nothing else like the Challenge in the state and probably the country – help make the Anglers’ Casting Hope Challenge a great success! Collectively, we can make a difference!


Thanks for considering this request!  At Operation North State, we’re an all-volunteer military support services organization utilizing NC’s People, Places, Products and Pride to support NC’s deployed troops and veterans-in-need. Our two most-noted projects are our NCCARES Christmas Box Project and our seven Fishin’ Festivals.  Both projects are unmatched in the Country!  



Operation North State’s founder, Terry Snyder, has promoted North Carolina’s People, Places, Products and Pride since 1995 when he opened Kicks & Grins – one of the first, if not the first, North Carolina product store. Mr. Snyder of Winston-Salem, NC (the Founder of Operation North State) serves as the organization’s Chairman and is a Proud Volunteer! Mr. Snyder has served on various non-profit boards on multiple occasions.  In addition, he has 30 years of sales/marketing experience in banking software and services and the real estate industry. Snyder’s current “day job” is selling real estate with Park Place Real Estate in Winston-Salem (the Triad-area) and he is the owner of Kicks & Grins Replacement Flags.

Charlie Smith from Raleigh is Operation North State’s Chief Military Advisor. In 2011, Mr. Smith retired from the State of North Carolina after more than 40 years of service which included serving 22 years as the Director of the NC Division of Veterans Affairs.  Most recently, Mr. Smith served as the Assistant Secretary for the N.C. Division of Veterans Affairs Department of Administration. Mr. Smith was awarded the State of North Carolina’s “The Order of the Long Leaf Pine” by Governors Jim Martin and Beverly Perdue. Snyder and Smith are “Proud Volunteers”; Operation North State is an ALL-VOLUNTEER organization. ONS is honored to receive financial, product, services and volunteer support from thousands of folks from around the state and North Carolina’s premier companies, brands and service organizations.