Editor's Note: James "Jimmy" Johnson's obituary and funeral arrangements are available online.
GANADO, Texas — The bass fishing community is reacting with an overwhelming show of grief and support following the untimely death of James “Jimmy” Johnson. The Texas B.A.S.S. angler was killed on Sunday while preparing to compete this week at the Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Central Open on Ross Barnett Reservoir.
Jackson, 56, was fatally shot on Sunday night outside his hotel room in Jackson, Miss. The gunman is in police custody and charged with capital murder.
Johnson was an avid bass fisherman in a state where the sport is more of a lifestyle than leisure pastime.
“The Texas bass fishing community is as big as the state itself,” said Tim Cook, Texas B.A.S.S. Nation Conservation Director. “Bass fishing is a big part of life here and one of those was taken from us.”
He continued, “Jimmy was a big part of our community. We’ve been overwhelmed with support and want to do what’s best for his family.”
An online memorial fund has been set up for Johnson’s family. Donations can be made through Anglers For Access. Proceeds will be given to Johnson’s wife, Mona, for funeral expenses and immediate needs of the family.
Plans are underway for a memorial tournament on Johnson’s home lake, Coleto Creek, in southeast Texas. The tournament is Dec. 7, 2013. For more information email Cook at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Not surprisingly, the outpouring of support from the B.A.S.S. Nation is spreading outside of Texas.
“I’m receiving phone calls, emails and messages from around the nation,” said Jon Stewart, B.A.S.S. Nation director. “Jimmy was a huge supporter of the B.A.S.S. Nation. It’s no surprise that our tight-knit group is reacting with so much grief and support.”
Bassmaster.com will provide more information about the memorial tournament as it becomes available.