Fishing for Freedom in Quincy

An Illinois Patriot Guard Fallen Heroes traveling memorial wall / KHQA's Brooke Hasch

U.S. Soldiers from all over the Midwest were recognized for their sacrifices this weekend in Quincy. It was apart of the first annual Fishing for Freedom fishing tournament.

Members of the Patriot Guard among other riders led the way to Clat Adams Park where close to 70 soldiers were greeted with warm hearts and a very warm Sunday afternoon.

Each warrior paired up with a bass fisherman for a full day of fishing on the Mississippi. The challenge to catch the biggest bass was on.

Only soldiers who've fought overseas in the Global War on Terror were eligible for the event. One of Quincy's local heroes, Sgt. Derek Jennings, even came home for the festivities. He's currently recuperating at Walter Reed Hospital in D.C. after being wounded while fighting in Afghanistan last year.

The entire weekend of events was paid for through sponsors and event organizers with the Bi-State Basser's Bass Club. Even the boats were donated by their owners.

Also at Sunday's weigh-in, an Illinois Patriot Guard Fallen Heroes traveling memorial wall dedicated to Illinois soldiers who've lost their lives serving our country. One listed was a familiar face to Jacksonville, Staff Sgt. Matthew Weikert who died last year fighting in Afghanistan.