Jack Wingate was a great ambassador

When Jack Wingate passed away last Thursday at his home in Faceville, our beloved Bainbridge, Decatur County and Lake Seminole lost one of their greatest ambassadors.

I have covered many bass tournaments on Lake Seminole during my 41 years as sports editor of this fine newspaper and Jack was always there to congratulate the winners and talk about the virtues of the lake.

I had just started with the paper in April 1970 when I covered my first bass tournament weigh-in on Lake Seminole.

My dear friend, former Post-Searchlight owner and publisher Sam Griffin, asked me if I would go down to Jack’s lodge on the lake and cover the weigh-in of a bass tournament.

I said sure, went down, talked to the winners and other top finishers, took pictures, and came back to the office.

I quickly wrote the tournament story and picture cutlines and sent them to Sam.

A little while later he came back to my desk and said there was a problem with my bass tournament coverage.

“Your story is not bad and you took pretty good pictures,” he said. “The problem is you have pictures of men with trophies. You covered a fishing tournament and you haven’t got a single fish in a picture.”

After that I made sure I got fish in all my weigh-in pictures.

Jack, Sam and I have had many laughs through the years about my first excursion into bass tournament coverage.

Jack loved the outdoors and loved kids. For many years he hosted his summer camp for boys at his campground.

My nephew Billy Crine, who lives in Atlanta and went to Jack’s camp as a youngster, couldn’t stop talking about how much he enjoyed it when he returned home.

For many years, the Bainbridge Bass Club, which was headquartered at Jack’s lodge on the lake, took youngsters from the Georgia Sheriffs Boys Ranch in Hahira on a weekend fishing trip on the lake.

Often, one of the highlights of the weekend was a meeting with Jack who would often entertain the boys with stories about the history of the lake and its surrounding areas.

I had the pleasure a number of years ago of interviewing Jack and writing the story when he was inducted into the legendary guides section of the National Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame in Hayward, Wis.

I’m sure many other local people have similar heartwarming stories about their experiences with Jack. He brought smiles to the faces of many.

In conclusion, I would just like to send my sincere prayers and condolences to Jack’s dear wife Mrs. Joyce and all his children and grandchildren.

News

Bainbridge community gathers for community gospel sing

News

Bainbridge Downtown Development Authority discusses tree removal, downtown parking survey

News

Arrest Reports, April 14- April 19

News

Decatur County Commissioner’s meeting agenda, April 23, 2024

News

Memories Car Club holds weekend car show

News

Rotary Club hears from Laws of Life essay winners

News

Bainbridge High School Band performs in National Cherry Blossom Festival

News

Owen Earnest finishes Singles State Runner-Up in back-and-forth title match

News

City of Bainbridge launches official app

News

Bearcats win second ever Region Title with win over Cairo

News

Lady Cougars celebrate six seniors on Senior Night

News

Bainbridge Lion’s Club hears from Scott Ewing about Decatur County Schools Foundation

News

Bainbridge Rotary learns about the Agape Shoppe

News

Memorial Hospital receives toy donation from Remaining Few Motorcycle Club

News

Nicole Tyre, Addison Hill net pair of hat-tricks in Ladycats’ win over Westover

News

Cougar baseball gets second win in a row with 10-8 victory over Fullington Academy

News

Beards for Benefits holds annual hunts, raises thousands for vets and disabled kids

News

Candidate Crosby Steen attends Spring Break kid’s event

News

Army enlistee Cain Worthington honored during pre-game veterans recognition ceremony

News

Decatur County Commissioners hear legal update on Safer Human Medicine litigation, vote on county retirement amendment

News

Bearcats fall to Cairo in back and forth battle

News

Firehouse Subs opens Inland Port Bainbridge location

News

Decatur County library holds eclipse viewing party

News

Decatur County Commissioners discusses emergency services, Whigham Dairy Road and more