Bassmaster founder Ray Scott dies

Bassmaster founder Ray Scott has died at age 88. (Source: WSFA 12 News)
Published: May. 9, 2022 at 3:17 PM CDT|Updated: May. 9, 2022 at 6:52 PM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Bassmaster has announced the death of its founder, Ray Scott.

Bassmaster says Scott died peacefully in his sleep from natural causes Sunday night. He was 88 years old.

Scott founded the first national professional bass fishing circuit in 1967. The following year he founded the Bass Anglers Sportsman Society, or B.A.S.S., which would become the world’s largest fishing group.

A historic marker honoring B.A.S.S. was erected in 2016.

“Our entire organization was saddened to hear about the passing of our founder, Ray Scott,” said B.A.S.S. CEO Chase Anderson. “Ray’s passion and vision for bass fishing birthed our entire industry more than 50 years ago when he founded B.A.S.S. and started the first professional fishing tournament series. His legacy is felt to this day and continues to influence B.A.S.S., the world’s largest fishing membership organization. Ray’s contributions and impact on conservation and his advocacy and passion for anglers and our sport set the standard for tournament fishing and are something we will always strive to uphold. Our hearts and prayers are with the Scott family.”

Scott was also a strong proponent for preservation. In 1972, he debuted a catch-and-release campaign and mandated that all tournament competitors’ boats feature an aerated livewell to keep their bass alive.

He was also an early advocate of bass fisheries research.

Former President Jimmy Carter appointed Scott to the U.S. Coast Guard’s National Boating Safety Advisory Council.

He was inducted into the Bass Fishing Hall of Fame in 2001.

In 2002, he was inducted into the National Boating Safety Hall of Fame. This was among numerous accolades and honors Scott earned throughout his career.

Scott had a close friendship with former President George H. W. Bush. The late president and first lady Barbara Bush would come to Pintlala to fish and attend church.

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