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Bill Catherwood

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
There are a few people you meet in this life that leave a lasting impression. In the years I have been fishing and tying I have been fortunate enough to meet several. Bill was one of the true innovators and influenced a great many others. I recall in January of 93 Bill paying a visit to American Anglers in NH where Bob Pop was doing one of his weekend tying classes. Everyone was looking for Bills grizzly rooster that would accompany him to some of his tying demonstrations. He left it home that day. I got to talk to Bill a few times. He once gave me a tour of his back yard where he kept his birds in cages as well as a goat. He had a few deer hides he was tanning and a ton of stories. When the local town banned hunting with firearms Bill would hunt geese with the long bow. Until I read this obit I had no idea that Bill was a war hero so I guess we have to thank him for more than his great contributions to fishing, fly fishing and fly tying and sharing that with others. Bill was the "real deal". This is from the Lowell Sun where you can read the complete obituary.


post #2 of 7
A thoughtful post and tribute …. thanks for that!
post #3 of 7
A true innovator and pioneer in our sport. RIP Mr. Catherwood and thank you for what you gave to the sport and the our country
post #4 of 7

R.i.p. Bill you and your flies will be sorely missed .

post #5 of 7

Thanks for posting his O.B.

I had the pleasure of Bill's Company both at the bench and fishing, I took him out for stripers a few times with the fly rod, we always had a great time! One of the tricks I had learned is when he would start in on the same fishing story for the 3rd or 4th time (they were all great, but) I would ask him about when he was in the service and he had plenty of great stories to tell. I don't know how many of you got to see his "Lobster" fly, a very cool pattern. Bill was kind enough to give me the first Lobster fly he ever tied, he said good luck with it, as if I would ever let it touch water...

 

He will be missed, a great innovator, unique tier, and a good friend...

post #6 of 7
not enough can be said about this... a war hero and a staple in the flytying world... a good life having had been looked up to and been around for so many years. we should all be blessed with an opportunity to live and die with honor...
post #7 of 7
That obituary certainly doesn't say enough, at least for us. Bill Catherwood was really one of the greats of our sport. As far as I know he was the first to tie streamers that truly (and closely) imitated the natural baits they were meant to copy. And he did this with big flies. One of the first (if not the first) to even tie practical big flies (in salt OR freshwater). Perhaps he was even the first to tie any type fly that closely resembled naturals as well. When he first tied his Giant Killers drys and even nymphs didn't even closely resemble what they were said to copy. His streamers pushed water and they were three dimensional as well. They were a HUGE STEP upward and forward in the world of fly tying, and fly fishing. And they were primarily tied for use in saltwater too, when there wasn't anywhere near the interest there has been since in fishing the brine. Think about THAT! I'm talking about the fifties and early sixties.

I talked to Bill a lot during Chuck Furimsky's Fly Fishing Shows starting in 1991 and International Fly Tying Symposiums (starting soon after) where we both were tyers. He loved my big flies and ideas and we had a lot in common. We talked about materials, design, how we tied stuff in, and lots about northeast and even freshwater fishing. It bothered him the way I had much of what I did "ripped off" from me (even at THAT time) and was surprised that it didn't seem to bother me much. I'm still touched by that.

Hats off and a big salute to the great Bill Catherwood. We recognize and appreciate what you've done for us, and we won't forget it.



Mark Sedotti
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