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West Liberty, OH

ILES students learn from a professional fisherman (Audio included)

Professional fisherman Mike Defibaugh encouraged students to practice hard and dream big when it comes to "reeling in" success in life.

Mike Defibaugh, from nearby Rushsylvania, recently spoke to students about what it takes to become a professional fisherman, including hours and hours of practice.

Defibaugh travels all over the country participating in fishing tournaments. Last spring, he won the prestigious Cabela's National Walleye Tour Event at Lake Erie.

Defibaugh explained that following the rules of any tournament or any part of life is necessary to success.

"There's going to be rules your whole life. Tournament fishing has really strict rules and, you know, you break one of the rules then that's the end of it. Learning a lot of this stuff right now, they don't realize it, but it's going to help when they get older no matter what their goals or dreams are."

Defibaugh explains his message.

Defibaugh told the kids that principles and knowledge about fishing can apply to many other fields. He explained how he uses math to make sure he is fishing at the proper depth and computer programming to understand what is happening with his boat, weather conditions and more. Kids got to check out his boat and learn about the other equipment he uses.

In 2017, Defibaugh earned more than $16,000 as a professional fisherman. He donated every cent to the Make A Wish Foundation. His visit coincides with the 4th Grade Hooked on Fishing, Not on Drugs event on May 15th.

(Pictured: Professional fisherman Mike Defibaugh speaking to Indian Lake Elementary School students)

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