Vale Ruth Sprague – a warm-hearted, much-loved member of the Recfishwest family

It is with great sadness we share with our members and supporters the news of the recent passing of much-loved former Recfishwest Events and Membership Officer Ruth Sprague. 

Ruth joined the Recfishwest team in mid-2014 as an Admin and Membership Officer and quickly became the friendly face at the front desk of the Recfishwest office and the cheery voice on the other end of the phone dealing with Recfishwest members, suppliers and members of the public.  

Ruth really thrived in the events and membership space, but also effectively became the surrogate office mum, always with a big smile, a sympathetic ear and more often than not some home-baked treat to help keep the office in good cheer.  

She played a key role in the Purple Flyfishing initiative as a passionate advocate for the work of Breast Cancer Care WA for which fishing clinics were organised to help women with breast cancer experience the well-being and relaxation gained from flyfishing.  

A cheery driving force

Ruth organised the funding, the venue, the catering, liaison with the Breast Cancer Care WA, flyfishing instructors, apparel and sponsors. 

One of the driving forces in the Recfishwest engine room, Ruth worked tirelessly behind the scenes at almost every boat show, delivering membership services, merchandise, safety messaging and show admin. She ran the kids Halco lure colouring-in competition, a big favourite with families attending the boat show. 

She also played an important part in the first ever Snapper Guardians event in February 2016, as she did with each subsequent Snapper Guardians – organising logistics and branded apparel.  

Ruth often was Recfishwest’s welcoming extended hand to the community and it was in this spirit Ruth facilitated our partnership with IntoWork – a work opportunity agency through which John Stubie came to work with us one day a week.   

A popular character at the office, Johnny, who has Asperger’s, loved the Recfishwest team environment and loved seeing Ruth every Tuesday morning helping pack member bags, pack lures, and organising kids fishing clinic gear.  

This was just another example of how Ruth’s infectious warmth made people feel welcomed and part of the team, which combined with her get-it-done attitude made Ruth a highly valued and popular member of the Recfishwest family.  

Ruth with Recfishwest CEO Dr Andrew Rowland, Partnerships and Business Manager Tim Grose and fishing instructors at a Purple Flyfishing event.

In turn, Ruth made the Recfishwest team feel connected with her family by talking as a proud wife, mum and grandmother about all her husband’s, kids’ and grandies’ achievements and news.  

Recfishwest CEO Dr Andrew Rowland said, “Ruth was a people-person through and through and whether dealing with Recfishwest members, Board members or staff members, she made everyone feel looked after and valued.  

“She was so often the one who did the hard yards behind the scenes to make our events happen, doing all the small unglamorous jobs that go into events coordination and services to our members. Her infectious attitude and legendary cake-baking skills helped keep the team morale running high!  

“She will be greatly missed by all staff and Board members alike along with many Recfishwest members whom came to know Ruth with great affection. We extend our heartfelt condolences to Ruth’s husband, Bob, her children Julie-Anne, Lyndall and James, along with the rest of her family.”  

Continue Reading

February 22, 2024

Metro southern garfish ban lifted

In good news for metro anglers, the ban on southern garfish from Lancelin to Myalup is due to be lifted from Friday 1 March.   The ban was implemented in 2017 after an assessment by the Fisheries Department showed…

Read More

February 20, 2024

Recfishwest calls for clarity on proposed offshore wind energy (OWE) projects’ impacts on the marine environment and fishing

Recfishwest  says the announcement by the Commonwealth Government on the area being proposed for offshore wind farms was disappointingly light on critical details. The proposal released yesterday has left fishers…

Read More

February 16, 2024

Recfishwest calls on Government to listen to local fishers and re-think illogical and unjustifiable no fishing zones

Recfishwest says that some of the proposed no-fishing zones in the Government’s South Coast Marine Park plans released today are “completely illogical and unjustifiable”. Recfishwest CEO Dr Andrew Rowland said, “…

Read More

February 14, 2024

Recfishwest welcomes Fisheries Minister’s west coast demersal reallocation decision

Recfishwest welcomes today’s decision by Fisheries Minister Don Punch to reallocate 20 tonnes of the west coast demersal catch to the recfishing sector – just over a year after changes to the fishery were made. …

Read More

January 31, 2024

Fishability launches new Perth vessel to help people with disabilities enjoy the magic of fishing on the Swan River!

Recfishwest and Fisheries Minister Don Punch joined fishing charity Fishability at the Royal Perth Yacht Club on the Swan River to launch its fantastic, new 8.75m specially adapted boat to give people with…

Read More

January 31, 2024

West coast demersal closure from 1 February – recfishers leading by example

From Thursday, 1 February, the west coast demersal fishery between Kalbarri and Augusta will be closed until 29 March (Good Friday) to recfishers.   It’s great to see recfishers play their part in the recovery of…

Read More