A younger generation of bass fishermen might not know the name, but for decades, Shag Shahid was the promotional face of Lew’s Speed Spools, especially following the death of Lew Childre in 1977. Making public appearances mostly in the South, the clever trick caster was also pictured regularly in advertising in the pages of Bassmaster Magazine and other publications.

I learned today that Shahid, 86, passed this weekend after a series of health issues.

While bass fishermen from Cajun bayou country were known for unusual (to the western U.S.) nicknames, Shahid’s heritage was quite different. His family was of Lebanese descent, and Shahid born in South Carolina, grew up under the red, white and blue and actually played both football and baseball at the military university The Citadel. “Shag” was a nickname given by his father (though there is some debate over its origin.)

Sometime in the early 1970’s he met Lew Childre where he became friends and fishing partners, and as the Childre rod business was in its early stages, curiously, it was Shahid who carved the wooden prototype handle that became the Fuji components standard of the era.

Services are scheduled for this week in Ft. Walton Beach, Florida.