Dennis Collier Fly Illustration - Copyright Dennis Collier 2015In Memory of Thomas R. Druggish

By Dennis P. Collier

My Dear Friend, Tom Druggish FishingOn April 26 2013, my good friend and fishing buddy, Tom Druggish, passed away after succumbing to cancer. He will truly be missed by many.

Tom and I met many years ago when he was new to fly fishing, and decided to hire a guide to hasten his journey up the learning curve. We fished the Big Thompson River in Rocky Mountain National Park that occasion, and by days end had struck a lasting friendship.

Tom also became my "hand model" in the ensuing years, as I took photo after photo of him holding a freshly caught trout. I often chided him that I spent more time taking photos of his fish than I did catching my own. Some of those images graced the pages of Fly Fisherman Magazine a few years ago, as photo illustration for some articles that I had published.

On one trip to Colorado's Frying Pan River, Tom earned the honorary (tongue in cheek) Native American moniker of "No Seeum Bear" and I will fondly remember him by that name in the spirit of good humor for the rest of my time on earth. The name speaks for itself. Druggs – as he was known to many – was quick of wit and had a wonderful sense of humor. Many was the time he had his captive audience on the river howling with laughter.

Tom was too young to die – we still had many fishing trips yet to come – but he will always be just around the bend, near but out of sight, and every time I string a fly rod and enter the liquid realm of fish and fisherman, he'll whisper "Dennis! Come quick and take a photo of my fish."

Good bye, Tom… God bless you my friend.