Clark & Family / Stick Figure at Levitate Music Festival July 2019
Founding Members of Operation Stoke, Dave Moore and Jason Wray were on a road trip to Cali Roots Music festival in California when they received a call from Clark Smith, a lifelong friend of Dave's.
Clark had been fighting a terminal diagnosis of stage 4 colon cancer with multiple surgeries and intensive radiation and chemotherapy treatments, but most importantly with a positive mindset and staying focused on taking care of his wife and 3 kids. During his treatments he and his wife had also moved their entire family of 5 from Hawaii to North Carolina to be closer to family during their difficult times.
Clark's call to Dave that day was one to celebrate though... After a long hard battle, Clark had just received the wonderful news of full remission from his doctors. All he wanted now was to surf again! Clark said he wanted a DMZ Surfboard, shaped by Dave, but he insisted the only way to make it happen was for Dave to hand deliver it to him on the East Coast.
That was a tricky request. Dave loved the idea but couldn't ask Clark to fund the trip and didn't have the means to do so himself either. That was when Jason stepped up and said "I'm gonna make it happen" and HE DID!
Fast forward to just a couple of months later, Jason had made arrangements for Dave to make a special limited edition Stick Figure surfboard to be given to Clark. He also generously offered to give 2 surfboards to the band to thank them for their incredible impact on the world through their music and positive message.
Thanks to Jason's generosity, and efforts from the entire group, Dave and his wife were able to fly from California to meet up with Jason on the East Coast, where Clark's family joined up with them in Virginia for a road trip to Levitate Music festival in Marshfield, MA to see one of their favorite bands, Stick Figure, at the Levitate Music Festival.
Dave and Jason were able to present the boards to Clark and his family as well as the band on the day of the show. They went on to have the time of their life at Levitate Music festival seeing numerous reggae acts including Stick Figure, Damian "Junior Gong" Marley, Iya Terra and many more.
Shortly after returning from this trip, Jason, Dave and Janessa were talking about what an amazing experience it was to do something that made so many people happy. They began to think about how great it would be to do things like this on an even larger scale and on a regular basis.
That's when Janessa suggested the idea of a Non Profit Organization to help fund more future projects. She explained it would be a lot of work and will take a whole group of experts and volunteers to really make it happen. Once again Jason said the magic words "Let's make it happen"... and WE ARE!
Born of the stoke from this first official mission by a group of friends, we are now in the process of forming Operation Stoke to become a 501(c)3 Non Profit Organization. We will continue creating more projects like this with private donations and volunteers inspired by a love for surfing, music, sports and positivity to help people dealing with various hardships.