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'He's accepted, and he's loved' : Adaptive Sports for Kids held fishing tournament for children, adults with disabilities

For 11 years, Allen Nation has devoted himself to giving children and adults with disabilities a place to have fun and participate.

NEDERLAND, Texas — For the second year in a row, a non-profit organization held an event that aims to make sure everyone gets a chance to get involved and have fun. 

A Saturday event at Doornbos Heritage Park in Nederland marked year two of a fishing tournament hosted by Adaptive Sports for Kids. The pond at the park was filled with fish just for the event.

“I got a catfish, three perch, and that bass,” Marten Holeman, atendee, said. 

Allen Nation is the executive director of the non-profit organization.

“They are really big catfish this year. It's just the perfect spot to have this event," Nation said.

For 11 years, he has devoted himself to giving children and adults with disabilities a place to have fun and participate.

“These kids just go overlooked, you know,” Nation said. “I’m not doing anything, we're not doing anything that you shouldn't do. Just like a dad with little league, they coach their little league.

To Nation, the mission is personal and hits right at home.

“My daughter is 25 now,” Nation said. “She's in a wheelchair. She's a college graduate, but when she was 5, she didn't have the opportunities everyone else did. So, that's where it comes from."

Parents at the event said what's most important is that their children have a place to belong.

“He's accepted, and he's loved,” Lawana Liedy, a mother, said. “That's the main thing. I love Adaptive Sports for Kids. They really get it. That's what makes the difference. They live it everyday."

Fishing is a long process. Fishers have to pick out bait, tie the line, cast it, and then wait. However, there is nothing like the moment when it all pays off.

As children and adults at the event made big catches, smiles filled Doornbos Heritage Park.

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