12 October 2009

A Son's Tribute To His Father

Charles Barnhart, brother to my wife, died on October 23, 2008. His son, Claude, writes a newsletter for the residents of the lake on which the family has a cabin. This is part of the article that Claude wrote last spring; it was lurking in a nook or cranny on my computer that I just ran into and thought it was worth sharing. Here it is:

“Fishing Bits and Bites”

Hello everyone I bet you are excited to get back out on the lake and do some fishing, me too. I have enjoyed some ice fishing with average success but am ready to get back in the boat. I am finding this years letter extremely difficult to write for one particular reason. As some of you may know I lost my fishing partner in October. My dad was a great angler and an even greater father. What makes him or any other person a great angler has nothing to do with expensive rods and reels, the latest electronics, or tackle boxes full of lures. To me it has to start with a passion for the sport. When you are just as happy if not happier that your son, daughter, or father caught more or bigger fish than you that day, or you go out fishing in the worst possible conditions imaginable, these are two examples of true passion for the sport. Another thing that is critical in becoming the best angler you can be is knowledge, you all know about reading in fishing magazines for the latest tips and tactics, I’m talking about the knowledge you get from other people. My father taught me so much about fishing as I was growing up, which I still use today in everyone of my fishing adventures, however as years moved on and certain aspects of angling changed, he was willing to listen, learn and adapt to change, that’s the making of a great angler. I could go on for hours and take up several pages of our newsletter with stories about my dad and I fishing, but I won’t. If my father was here today and he was going to make one comment to all of you, I think he would say “Take your kids fishing”. You will make so many great memories that are just irreplaceable, trust me I know. Fishing is a sport best shared with family and friends. In regards to the fish in our lake, the walleyes seem to be doing well. ... Thank you so much for listening to me share my views and opinions. Enjoy the lake and I wish you all success in your angling adventures in the years to come. I would like to dedicate this years letter in loving memory of Charles Barnhart. I love you dad. Claude Barnhart