Bellefonte native, military veteran fulfills ‘childhood dream’ on ‘Force on Force’
Bellefonte native and retired Staff Sgt. Vincent Reynolds grew up playing Army as a kid, but his military experience provided him with an opportunity to turn another “childhood dream” into reality.
Now, Reynolds spends his days as an angler on a boat in Texas, sometimes with a television crew filming as he competes on Army Bass Anglers’ show “Force on Force,” a competitive fishing series that airs on the World Fishing Network and features United States military veterans.
Growing up near Spring Creek, Reynolds said he often went trout fishing. Occasionally, his neighbor would take him bass fishing, a luxury for Reynolds.
“I grew up watching the guys on TV, and it was just something that I always had a passion about,” Reynolds said. “I just didn’t always have the means to do it.”
In 2007, Reynolds enlisted in the Army. While serving his second deployment in Afghanistan, Reynolds stepped on an improvised explosive device. As a result, he lost his left leg and medically retired.
Reynolds moved to Texas to be closer to his fiance’s family. Once there, he said he wanted to fish competitively, and Army Bass Anglers let him do just that.
“I decided I was going to buy a boat and try my luck,” Reynolds said.
The show’s contestants are military veterans who compete in bracket-style tournaments. Participants are given four hours to fish, and the anglers with the top five heaviest fish at the end of the time frame move on to the next bracket.
While “Force on Force” has been filmed throughout the country, season eight takes place in Texas, and Reynolds said although the show is filmed, edited and produced, “Force on Force” accurately portrays the reality of fishing — broken rods and reels included.
“You’ll see even the pros get backlashes every once in a while,” Reynolds said. “You’ll see them make the mistakes ... everything’s on there.”
Reynolds said he hopes Centre County residents will tune in to watch a “hometown guy follow his dream” and compete on the show. Season eight premiered on July 1. Viewers can watch Sundays at 2 p.m., Mondays at 10:30 a.m., Wednesdays at 5:30 p.m. and Fridays at 7 a.m.
“Thanks to my military service and ... Army Bass Anglers, I get to fish competitively and at a professional level,” Reynolds said. “Now, I get to travel the country and fish these tournaments. Being on TV, it’s a privilege, and I’m excited for the season to air.”