Jerry McKinnis passed away early Sunday, Nov. 3 at 82, and his life has since been chronicled in media outlets across the nation. It hit the fishing world hard.
His service Friday in Little Rock was incredibly moving, with many of the people he worked with and whose lives he touched present to pay their respects. There has been an outpouring of condolences and comments, and the following are the thoughts of those close to him and those who felt close through his long-running show, The Fishin’ Hole.
Some of the following comments have been edited for length and style.
“Sad day today … He was on my Mt. Rushmore of bass fishing along with Forrest Wood, Ray Scott and Johnny Morris.” -- Chris Brimager
“Oh my. Just found out we lost Jerry McKinnis to the great fishing hole above. My regards to his family and friends. Jerry was a personal friend of mine and the sport of bass fishing!” -- Larry Nixon
“Jerry McKinnis has now moved on the greatest and only eternal Fishin’ Hole. Worked with Jerry and JM Associates when we first started the FLW Tour. Was a very caring and genuine man. Catch one for him on your next trip ... He was the glue!” -- Bill Taylor
“Waking up in the mornings on Saturday with my dad and watching … was so important to me. He meant more to fishing to me than anything that I could have never known. … Thank you Jerry McKinnis for bringing my father and me closer together growing up.” -- Matt Hargarten
“The ESPN community is saddened to learn of the passing of Jerry McKinnis.” -- ESPN
"Jerry was truly a force of nature. He got mad at me a few times, but that just showed me he cared deeply. Even though he was a legend in fishing and television, he also had a vulnerable side. It made him human. I’m honored to have worked with Jerry McKinnis. -- Jim Sexton