Original Caption: Early leader Ron Shearer shows two of the bass he caught in Wednesday's first round of Champs Tourney. July 1980, Lexington Herald-Leader, photo credit: Associated Press.

Today’s historical photo is of Kentucky angler, Ron Shearer, a staple on the Bassmaster Trail from 1978-1990.  According to the Bassmaster website, Ron fished 96 events and made 5 Classic appearances (’80-’82, ’84-’85).  His winnings totaled $112,648, and he recorded two Invitational wins, one in 1982 (Florida/East), and another in 1985 (Texas).

In this particular news photo dating back to July 1980, he was competing at the BASS Champs tournament.  The brief local write-up stated, “Ron Shearer, a 27-year-old professional bass fisherman from Hardin, Ky., fell from first to finish sixth Friday in the three-day, $49,000 Bass Anglers and Sportsman Society (BASS) Champs Tournament held here on Guntersville Lake.

“Shearer, a former Lexington resident, had the lead after each of the first two rounds but caught only one four-pound fish Friday and finished with a total of 43 pounds, 14 ounces.  He had the third biggest single catch of the whole tournament at 7-8.”

Basil Bacon ended up winning that event, but Ron was able to go on and qualify for the Classic that year.