In memory of Captain John Koegler. He was an excellent fisherman, a good friend and teacher, and a natural scientist.
February 16, 1936 – February 23, 2015
Captain John always had a good fishing yarn, a fascinating anecdote or a new scientific question to share. A natural storyteller, his seven decades of experience fishing out of New Jersey ports gave him an endless supply of sea wisdom. He was an excellent fisherman, a good friend and teacher, and a natural scientist.
Captain John Koegler was born in Philadelphia and attended LaSalle High School and LaSalle College. He served in the Marines during the Korean War. But every summer he could, he fished – first on his Dad’s boat, Miraamy, then as a mate on several boats, and later on his and his brother Bruce’s Pop’s Pride. He learned about fishing the old-fashioned way, from his captains and through years of experience.
In 1993, John qualified as a Master Mariner of the U.S. Merchant Marine. Soon after that, he began writing the regular fishing column for The Beachcomber. He went on to write for The Sandpaper and the newsletter of the Jersey Coast Anglers Association. His columns and reports were always supported by careful research and accurate detail. But best of all, they were fun to read.
He was a founding member of the Beach Haven Charter Fishing Association (BHCFA); and a member of the National Association of Charter Boat Operators, Jersey Coast Anglers Association, Thousand Fathom Club of New Jersey, Beach Haven Marlin & Tuna Club, Recreational Fishing Alliance, and past member of the Avalon Yacht Club. Captain John was one of the founders of the BHCFA’s Junior Mates program, and taught junior mate candidates regularly at the New Jersey Maritime Museum in Beach Haven.
The BHCFA has named the Junior Mates annual fishing tournament in John’s memory. Contributions in support of the Captain John Koegler’s beloved Junior Mates Program may be sent to James Zavacky, President.