Most of you already know this, but the D’Arbonne fishing community has lost another good one. This happens more often than I’d like. I can’t always write about it. But this time I can.
I’m sorry I didn’t get to tell Kirk Townsend goodbye. Kirk and I weren’t real close friends and we didn’t share a lot in common in life, except fishing and good old fashioned American values. Isn’t that enough? That included a keen respect for each other’s similarities and differences. I didn’t even know he had been badly sick until a few weeks ago.
Then, we joked back and forth on Facebook a few times and I heard he was heading home. On May 1, I was saddened to heard he was in his final home, his final resting place. Like so many, I didn’t get to tell him goodbye before he passed away.
A guy like Kirk would want us to give pause for a minute and say, hey, don’t leave any business unattended. Don’t put off telling somebody they are important and you care about them. Just do the right thing. That’s the kind of guy he was. “Puff Daddy” wouldn’t want any credit or recognition for that.
Kirk was born in Bastrop, grew up in Lake Charles and lived most of his life with his wife Angela in Farmerville. He was a member of The International Union of Operating Engineers, Local 406. He operated heavy equipment on pipelines before becoming a truck driver, driving to every continental state in the United States and some of Canada. He loved traveling. He operated a commercial poultry farm and also became a pipeline inspector. Like many folks around here, he went wherever the need to work for a living took him. But his real passion was crappie fishing and talking fishing with his “fishing buddies.
We never got to get in a boat together. But I never went to an event when he was also there when he didn’t find me and ask, “Mr. Kinny, how you doing?”. And then he’d say he really liked something I had written.
I’m sorry I didn’t get to ask him how he was doing one final time. We did “chat” on Facebook, where he listed his education as “Learned at the Old School of Hard Knocks”. As you can tell by our last exchange posted here, he kept his sense of humor until the end.
There’s another crappie fishing event coming up that Kirk would never ask for, but if you knew him, it’s a good chance to say the “goodbye” that maybe you missed out on earlier this month.
On June 20, Crappie Fishermen United of Louisiana (one of his favorite groups of folks) will put on a memorial crappie tournament on D’Arbonne in memory of Kirk. It will be a one-big-fish winner, taking half the winnings. The other half goes to his family. With this group of guys, don’t be surprised if the winner doesn’t just donate his share, too. Kirk would have probably done it that way had he won.
This will be a single person tournament, but you can have as many people in your boat as you want. Cost is $25.00 per person (not per boat). Fishing time is 6 a.m. to 12 p.m. You can register at K&M Coffee, Corks and Camo and the weigh-in will be there as well. There will also be a bake sale that day also. If you would like to bring a sweet to give it would be appreciated. Also if you like to donate to this cause you may do so by dropping it off at K&M. For more info contact Neal Pace 318-547-2187.