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Many people with disabilities miss out on the everyday activities that many of us take for granted. The water can be a healing place for people that are suffering or have been through a traumatic event. Kayaking, canoeing, and paddle boarding are a few ways people can relieve stress and begin to heal. Getting on the water can be a struggle for those individuals due to physical limitations.


Paddle for Heroes, a small veteran’s organization, works diligently to involve veterans, first responders, and others with river clean-ups, community projects, disaster relief, and healing through paddling.The organization works with local organizations to do yearly river clean-ups so that everyone can enjoy the rivers.

Founder Steven Fleming with Feller.

Ways to Partner With Us.

ADA Accessible Kayak Launch Fundraiser

Paddle for Heroes wanted to contribute to the community of Mount Vernon, Ohio. Installing an ADA Accessible Kayak Launch at Ariel-Foundation Park will allow the local and surrounding community members a place to come where they could enjoy the comforts and enjoyment of the water, without the concern of deciding how to get in and out of their kayak or canoe. Paddle for Heroes has worked with the community and raised over $30,000 to install the launch. 

We are happy to announce that the launch was installed on June 6th, 2019! 

We are now looking for ways to continue to help those that would like to enjoy the water but don't always have the resources. A donation to Paddle for Heroes would help us provide adaptive paddling equipment such as, kayaks, paddles, life jackets and more to those that would not be able to purchase them on their own.

Together we can do great things!

ADA Accessible Kayak Launch

The goal of Paddle for Heroes is to help our community through healing through paddling and to ensure that our waterways are clean. Every person should be able to share in the same access to the water and enjoy the experience in a clean environment.

Our specific objectives for this endeavor were to:

  • Raise funds to install an ADA Accessible Kayak Launch at Ariel-Foundation Park.

  •  Help our community and those that have disabilities get back on the water easily and safely.

  •  Allow those that have not been able to enjoy the water because of a disability have access to the activities they enjoy most.

  • Promote outdoor activities that support healing and health.

Kayak Launch Ribbon Cutting. Launch used with ease.

Mount Vernon to Marietta

Each year our group of veterans and supporters go on a 160-mile paddle from Mount Vernon to Marietta to raise awareness of the healing benefits of  paddling. We have had overwhelming support from small towns and communities along the way. Won't you join us? 

Cleaning Up Our Rivers

Paddle for Heroes has participated with Knox County Recycling & Litter Prevention, along with other volunteers  in several river clean ups on the Kokosing River and Mohican River. The goal is to help our rivers stay clean and healthy for many years for people to enjoy.  

Paddle for Heroes volunteers have participated in river clean ups for the Kokosing River in 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020, and the Mohican River in 2019 and 2020. We have also taken our river clean-ups to Michigan and participated in the Jordan River clean-up in 2018 and cleaned the White River in 2020. As Paddle for Heroes grows, the goal will be to clean up many additional waterways throughout the Midwest along with support of volunteers, veterans and first responders. 

River clean-up. Boat shown with many old tires pulled out.
Mission Statement


Our mission is to involve veterans, first responders, and others with river clean ups, community projects, disaster relief and healing through the paddling.


Paddle for Heroes was organized on behalf of veterans and others that have suffered traumatic events that deserve the opportunity to enjoy the little things in life and to be given the opportunity to heal.

We Believe

  • We believe that nature and water are powerful in the healing process.

  • We believe that individuals should have access to the same activities no matter their physical or mental status.

  • We believe that healing and enjoyment is unique to each individual and if we can help just a few, that is going a long way.

PFH Team paddling into the lock.

Contact Paddle for Heroes

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