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Good Man Gone

Old 05-18-2012, 05:59 AM
Nontypical Buck
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Join Date: Jan 2008
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Default Good Man Gone

Not sure where to or even if to post this ... but .... dang this has been a tough past 12 months. I have lost 3 great friends to diseases that took them away welll before I would have ever expected. This afternoon there will be a service in memory of Mark Whitlock. He lost a 2 year, hard fought battle with cancer.

Any hunter/fisherman living near Bimingham, Alabama probably is familiar with Marks Outdoors. In 1979 at the ripe old age of about 20 Mark started his hunting and fishing retail business on a shoe string budget. Many times he came to the end of a month wondering if he could make payroll. But he hung in there and worked his rear end off building a great business. His first "store" was a whopping 500 sq. ft. , with one glass case and a sparse stock. But as the years passed, his vision of a superb store and a wider selection of gear matured. Now Marks Outdoors is one of the most successful and well regarded independent retail hunting-fishing businesses in the entire USA.

Mark never lost sight of his humble beginnings. He was one of the nicest and one of the most generous men that I have ever known. There is no telling how many tens of thousands of dollars of stuff he has given to local fund raisers, Boy Scout troups, church youth programs and such. I once asked him for a
"little" donation of "give away stuff" for our church youth's "Wild Game Supper" ... and he darned near filled my pick up bed with rod-real combos, youth bow-arrow sets, game calls, lures, caps and shirts, pocket knives, flashlights, etc. We had enough stuff for 3 years of "give-aways" for our wild game banquets.

He has been a strong and listened to voice for the hunter and fisherman here in Alabama. Loved God and what a family man !
It'll be tough going back to the store and not seeing him sitting over there in the corner by the long guns, shooting the bull with a customer or on the phone trying to locate some piece for gear for somebody. I will miss him a lot.
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Old 05-18-2012, 07:55 AM
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Join Date: Nov 2008
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sorry to hear i just lost my best friend and a great hunting and fishing partner to suicide in febuary
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