Stacey King, Charlie Campbell, Bass Pro Shops, Ranger Boats, bass fishing history, bass fishing hall of fame, bass fishing

Today’s Friday Finale historical photo dates back to 1989, and a 40-year-old Stacey King.  After qualifying for his first Bassmaster Classic, King said, “I have already accomplished a bunch.  If I was done tomorrow, I’d feel I made it.”

This was just a few years into a professional bass angling career, one that would end up comprising 214 Bassmaster events alone, spanning roughly 33 years, and including a total of 12 Classic appearances, and two wins among 31 top ten finishes.  All this despite the story mentioning that “King figures he’s good for another 10 years on the tour,” before retiring back to a life of guiding and other industry related endeavors.”

What follows are a few more excerpts from a detailed story on Stacey’s efforts to that point in the Springfield News-Leader paper, published in 1989.

> “I didn’t know if I’d get into the big time like I am now, but I always had the dream.” King, a Springfield native and Parkview High School graduate, said.  He has fished 19 B.A.S.S. events, winning $41,996.

> “I always felt I could do it.  But it’s so expensive to travel and compete in national tournaments.  You have to have the sponsors to compete, but you have to compete well to gain the sponsors.

> King started guiding about 20 years ago, getting his first job from former Fall Greek Marina operator Eddie Faucett on Taneycomo Lake.  From there, he got into, bass guiding.

> But it still wasn’t enough to put him on the national tour full-time, although he tried a few tournaments with the backing of several individuals.  In addition to B.A.S.S., he fished U.S. Bass and Red Man and “won quite a bit of money.”

> One of his early sponsors was Ranger Boat Company of Flippin, Ark.  Then his stock picked up last year when he was added to the Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Marine national fishing team, which includes his longtime friend, Charlie Campbell of Forsyth.

> “Charlie (Campbell) has had a great influence in all my tournaments and in my life,” King said.  “He is a great role model.  I think he’s the finest gentleman on the face of the earth.”