Ill. Member Casts Line on ‘Trip of a Lifetime’


December 27, 2013


Rockford, Ill., Local 196 Business Manager Eric Patrick’s thrilling fishing trip to coastal Louisiana hits the airwaves Jan. 12 on the Sportsman Channel’s “Brotherhood Outdoors.”

The hectic life of an IBEW business manager offers few reprieves and little free time.

But for Eric Patrick, leader of Rockford, Ill., Local 196, such hard work was rewarded earlier this year when the Union Sportsmen’s Alliance invited him to coastal Louisiana for a fishing expedition.

“I love the outdoors and have always wanted to fish the trip that I was picked to go on,” said Patrick, a four-year USA member.

In an upcoming episode of USA’s show “Brotherhood Outdoors,” watch Patrick as he travels with co-hosts Daniel Lee Martin and Julie McQueen to Venice – along the Gulf Coast – to fish big tuna from a state-of-the-art kayak.

Patrick’s “trip of a lifetime” airs at 11 a.m. eastern time Sunday, Jan. 12 on the Sportsman Channel.

Between chumming, cutting bait and spotting fish at the surface, Patrick quickly learns the ropes as deckhand before pulling in a half-dozen red snapper and four large cobia that “hit like a tank, and ran like a missile,” he says.

The popular TV show picked Patrick – a longtime fan of the program – for the trip largely because of his union pride, activism and community engagement.

“He’s very driven,” said Local 196 Assistant Business Manager Andrew Taft. “He looks at the union members almost like his own family. He shows a lot of concern when people need help, and he’s really out there to make sure that they’re OK.”

Patrick’s recent participation in a USA-sponsored project to benefit the Torstenson Youth Conservation Education Center found him with a crew of union volunteers helping renovate a youth campground in Pecatonica – about an hour-and-a-half drive northwest from the local.

Click here to see the full “Brotherhood Outdoors” schedule on the Sportsman Channel.


Photo credit: Union Sportsmen's Alliance