Thursday, March 31, 2011

Bunny

My wife, Jan, called this morning with the unpleasant news that a friend of mine, Bunny Lampe passed away last night. Some months back he had complained of a pain in his back. He thought he may have pulled a muscle working at the cold storage. When the pain didn't go away he had it checked out and the diagnosis was cancer. I don't know all the particulars about it and I guess it doesn't matter, the fact is we've lost another fisherman here in Hoonah and more than that, someone who made the world a better place with his presence. I believe his given name was Robert, but if you were a stranger in town and asked for Robert Lampe, I doubt that most people would have been able to direct you to him. If, however, you asked about Bunny, he would immediately be pointed out. Everybody knew Bunny, and I would venture to say, liked him as well. When I fished out of a fourteen foot Hi-Laker skiff so many years ago, I frequently had to compete with Bunny for whatever fish might be around. We would pass each other in our skiffs and he would often yell-"HOW MANY TOM?" I would hold up a number of fingers to represent my catch, and almost always he would hold up more. He was an exceptional fisherman with rods. I don't know of anyone who enjoyed it more. We were out fishing  for cohos at Point Sophia years ago, and when we passed, Bunny yelled over, " I TOLD MYSELF, I CAN'T HAVE ANOTHER BEER UNTIL I CATCH  NUMBER THIRTY FOUR" I laughed and waved and about fifteen minutes later I heard- "WAHOOO!" and watched him pop the top on a cold one. For a number of years he worked at the Hoonah Cold Storage buying fish. All the fishermen liked him and he would frequently comment favorably when you brought in a good load or had a particularly large fish. He had a way of making you feel good no matter what you caught. He almost always pointed out beyond the dock and would mention this point or that as the current hot spot that I should fish next. Of course he told everyone his secret place. He was one of the best natured men I've ever come across and it was always a pleasure to see him.  Those of us who knew him are left with fond memories. He'll  be sorely missed.

3 comments:

  1. Sorry dad, but good blog about him!

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  2. good blog dad, sorry to hear about Bunny.

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  3. Thanks girls. When I got the news yesterday it was like getting hit in the gut. I knew he was failing health wise, and I would never wish for him to prolong his pain, but the idea of never seeing him again or speaking to him is kind of unnerving. I can't think of anyone who didn't like him. Some people pass on and a few days later they're forgotten. It won't be like that with Bunny. I think he'll be fondly remembered for years to come.

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