Well another big snow has hit the Barren River Lake area. As I sat looking out the window and listening to Waylon Jennings it hit me how truly blessed I am. This article while fishing related has no tips or report with it. I wanted to share a bit of my journey with you all. I was born in Monticello KY, and I can not remember a time when I didn’t fish. as soon as I was big enough to hold a rod I was at the pond reeling in two inch long bluegills one after the other. Some families are musical, some are into sports, but our family were, and are outdoorsmen. Being cooped up inside was a necessity at times as work always came first, but we were hunting, fishing, riding horses, target shooting, just to name a few of the things we loved to do. But the main thing we did was fish. summer, fall, winter, and spring, we were on or near the water. Now I am afforded the opportunity to share my love of the outdoors with all of you. I would Like to thank Clay Scott of Barren River Blog and Phil Turner of Tennessee Fishing Reports for allowing me the privilege to guest write for them. It has truly been an honor to work with those guys and I have learned a lot from them both.
So to get a bit further into my story. As a small child my Grandmother, Dad, Mom and Great Uncle among others took me fishing. I became obsessed with it. I wanted to go every day, and through the summer I did a lot of the time. My Great Uncle Ralph Thornton would come and get me, we would go to Conley Bottom and Mill Springs among other bank spots on Lake Cumberland. There was not a pond, creek, or mud hole in Wayne County KY that we did not fish in. We would have Moms Kitchen sink full of blue gill, crappie, and bass. We sure ate good! My Dad had an old v bottom fiberglass boat I think it was an astro glass, and was a hand me down from my great uncle. We did not have depth finders, trolling motors casting decks, It had five benches to set on and we would tie up to a tree or drop anchor. It had a 20 horse Chrysler outboard on it, but we sure caught fish out of it. My Granny would load up her coat pocket with red worms and we would fish in her farm pond until we ran out of bait. She would say boy you would rather fish than eat when you are hungry. Looking back I fished because I was hungry. I was hungry for knowledge, I was hungry to get better than my older brother, I was hungry to feed an unexplainable primal urge we all feel to provide, and I was hungry for the challenge, the fight, and the gratification of accomplishing something you work for. Things have not changed that much in 30 some years. I am still hungry for all of these things.
I never believed I could get money to do something I love this much. I ran from it for years and let fear keep me from pursuing a career. I know now that, fear and uncertainty was Satan. He did not want me to succeed. My only regret is not realizing at an earlier age that fishing was my call, what I am supposed to do. Folks if you love doing something work hard and figure out a way to make it pay. There is never an excuse to let someone out work you. They may have more natural talent but they should never out work you. Talent without effort is very limited.
In closing I would like to thank some people, and I am sure I will leave a few out so I apologize in advance to them. First and Foremost I want to thank God for putting me in the position he has. I want to thank my Mom, and Dad for letting a boy be a boy and grow up wild. I want to thank Ralph Thornton (Monk) for his unlimited kindness, love, honesty, understanding and support. He truly was the most Christ like person I have ever met, and I would not be me without him. I want to thank Granny for all she taught me and keeping supper warm for me until I got done fishing. I am still learning from Dad he is without a doubt the best fisherman I know. I want to thank my Brother for making me competitive, without his trash talk I would not have developed a such a desire to win. I want to thank Lucas Koontz, my best friend and brother from another mother for always having my back no matter if you agree or not you are there. I want to thank my Step Father Glen Hester for being so good to all of us. I want to thank Krista my wife and Lane my son. Thank you all for understanding late nights, articles, tournaments, periscopes, and loving me all the time even when I am at my worst. Todd Logsdon, you have done as much to help my fishing career as anyone and words can not express the gratitude I feel for that. You are a great guy! Freddie Bellamy you were my first sponsor and support me so much you are more than a friend you are family, we love you all. You believed in me when no one else including myself did. I want to thank all sponsors as you all believe in me and without your support it would sure be and to do what I do. If you are reading this please check my sponsors out let them know I sent you. They include Barren Outdoors, G Loomis, Shimano, Psycho Lures, Snack Daddy Lures, Blobfish sunglasses, and Freddie’s Dugout. Lastly I want to thank the readers for you continued support.
I always enjoy reading your emails and answering your questions.