MOREHEAD CITY, N.C. (WNCT) — More than 35 boats will set out to compete in the Keli Wagner Lady Angler Tournament. 

It is in remembrance of Wagner, who lost her battle with cancer in 2008. According to the KWLA website, “The KWLA tournament is named in honor of the late wife of Big Rock board member, Casey Wagner, who lost her battle with cancer in 2008. Keli was enthusiastic about the success of this tournament, and she played a vital role in having the proceeds donated to the cancer clinic.”  

A team of ladies who work in the cancer center at Carteret Health Care in Morehead City are trading in their scrubs for fishing gear this year. They will be participating in the KWLA tournament. 

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“The KWLA gives us so much,” she said. “Every year it goes back to the care and comfort of our patients. From surgery to medical oncology, radiation oncology, the items were able to provide for our patients. The KWLA is generous yearly and their donations.” 

Three nurses and a pharmacist who work in the cancer center are going on the boat named ‘Perseverance.’ They know what it is like to persevere. The patients they care for do, too.

“No matter what we face, each hour, each minute we have to persevere through,” said Kim, a pharmacist for Carteret Health Care. “To have the boat called Perseverance, to help us help our patients persevere through these diagnoses and treatments, they’re experiencing, it couldn’t be a better hand-picked name if we had gotten to choose the name of the boat.”

“We walk the journey with them [our patients,]” said Shannon, a registered nurse. “When they cry, we cry. When they laugh, and we ring the bell together. When they finish their last treatment, it is such an amazing journey to experience with our wonderful patients”  

They are hoping to bring home the big prize. If they do, here’s where the money will go.

“We are so grateful for the opportunity to fish and be able to give back to the KWLA that they have so graciously giving us money for our patients,” Shannon said. “We see what they do for our patients. If we just give our patients a little gas card, they are overwhelmed with joy that they can come to the clinic.

“We’ve done the gowns for them. We have patient comfort earbuds and iPads that we have purchased from the Keli Wagner funds.” 

It’s the 25th year for the tournament. The event was supposed to be one day. However, due to the weather, participants can choose between Saturday or Sunday to fish.

For more information on the tournament, click here. 

For more details about Carteret Health Care, go here.

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