A new neighbor approached me several years ago when I first moved into my house. "You ever fish LaDue?" as he looked at my shiny bassboat just arriving to the new found garage. "Come on in here and take a look at these!"
"What you think about those basses!?" When I saw the 8 and 9 pounders on the wall and heard the wondrous stories it didn't take me long to gear up the spare 12ft flatbottom to make my first venture on Mother. Ray and I obviously were just meant to live aside one another.
Ray was an older Tennessee man having grown up near the dam of Norris Lake. His Southern drawl and kindheartedness lead every single person he ever encountered into a smile.
Ray and I lived next to each other, fished with one another and shared the weekly triumphs of mowing the yard for some time. Not a more genuine human has ever walked the planet. Over three years ago his war
with cancer began.
Ray continued to fish, mow the yard and ALWAYS remained positive- for he knew no enemies during his battle.
Ray is the essence of our little electric only series on Mother. Not only did he inadvertently direct us to her, his life exposed what she preaches... there are no enemies but yourself, smile and keep on fishn'.
June 12th, Ray moved on. I spoke with him the night before, having the opportunity to express my gratitude for impacting my angling quest and life forever. Words can only go so far. I let him know many others are grateful for the experience on LaDue and had it not been for him, many of us wouldn't be the same whether in fishn' or life.
One man, some green "bassess" and a computer ... have you seen the enemy?
Thanks Ray, peace be with you. We hope to give a little back - 8/22 is all for you buddy.