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June 2, 2008

Waco Man Named to Texas Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame

ATHENS, Texas — Charlie Pack of Waco will be inducted into the Texas Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame at a banquet at the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center June 7.

Pack was nominated in the angler category in recognition of his fishing accomplishments, fishing inventions and work with introducing young people to fishing.

In 1996 Pack founded the Tadpole Charitable Foundation, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that has given more than 40,000 children the chance to fish. All equipment is furnished, and the annual free day of fishing attracts several thousand attendees. The foundation also maintains a fishing equipment lending library. Its motto is "Off the streets and on the creeks."

Pack integrates fishing into every aspect of his life. As a salesman for American General Life Insurance, Pack sold many policies by taking potential clients fishing. His "Fishing Country" television show has aired on several Texas stations for 18 consecutive years and won a Telly Award in 1992. He makes frequent public appearances at schools, civic organizations and other venues, giving fishing demonstrations. He is sponsored by Wal-Mart and Coca-Cola.

Pack has won several bass fishing and crappie fishing championships and is the inventor of the "Pack Pole," an 11-foot telescoping crappie rod. Described in the nomination as "one of Texas’ best athletes and fishermen, a fierce competitor," Pack was a high school All-American basketballer at Waco High and still holds the records for most points scored in a game (49) and free-throw percentage (92). He graduated from Baylor University, where he was an All-Southwest Conference basketball player in 1955.

Pack and his wife, Lynn, have been married for more than 40 years and have four children and six grandchildren. A band he started in 1950, "The Originals," is still active.

The Texas Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame honors legendary anglers, fisheries professionals and organizations that have made a contribution to freshwater fishing in Texas.

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