Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing and Hemingway’s “Big Two-Hearted River”

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Published in: The Hemingway Review, vol. 35, no.1, Fall 2015.


The nonprofit organization Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing, established in 2005, is committed to helping American war veterans deal with the physical and emotional wounds incurred in combat. Volunteers teach veterans how to fly fish, tie flies, and build rods, and they accompany the vets to streams, rivers, and lakes for angling. Although the Project Healing Waters website makes no mention of Ernest Hemingway or his story “Big Two-Hearted River,” the organization’s mission suggests that contemporary veterans, like Hemingway’s Nick Adams, can find peace and become healthy while fishing on a body of water.