• Man who brought Rapala lures to US dies

    by  • October 1, 2012 • Uncategorized • 0 Comments

    The man who played a key role in introducing Rapala lures to the US has died. Ron Weber, who was 84, was still running four businesses right up to his death, though he had moved out of the tackle business in the 1990s when he sold Normark to the Rapala family. Weber owned a Minneapolis tackle distribution company in the 1950s, when he discovered a few of Lauri Rapala’s early lures at a small shop in Duluth. He gave a few to Ray Ostrom, a customer who was an avid fisherman. The pair later formed a partnership after reaching an exclusive US deal with Rapala. The pair ordered their first 1000 Finnish baits in February 1960 and shortly thereafter requested another 2040. When a story appeared in Life magazine, the fledgling company got orders for more than 3 million lures. Remarkably, Rapala gave the pair permission to register the US firm as The Rapala Company, a name that later changed to Normark. Story here.


    Editor and publisher of Classic Angling magazine. Founder member of UK Angling Writers' Association and current chairman. Former winner of Writer of the Year. I wrote a weekly angling column for The Independent for 23 years, having previously written columns for The Guardian and Sunday Mirror. If it swims, I'll fish for it: marlin or mackerel, trout or tench, salmon or snook. I've written several books on fishing, from one for the Duke of Edinburgh's award to the notorious Catchmore Sharks (don't look at the pictures) and Bob Nudd's autobiography, How to be the World's Best Fisherman. I love exotic travel for fishing (been to Mongolia and Ecuador, the Great Barrier Reef and Arunachal Pradesh) and wish I could afford to do such trips more often. My favourite fish? Anything with fins, though I have a special love for mahseer, and I'm chairman of The Mahseer Trust.

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