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Bruce Holt ‘guiding light at G.Loomis’ dies aged 73


Bruce Holt, who has died aged 73, was one of the best-known and most respected figures in the fly fishing industry. He began working for G.Loomis in 1985 and stayed there until his retirement in 2019.

Holt occupied a number of key roles for the high-end rod manufacturer. He headed sales and marketing up to 1997, when the brand was acquired by Shimano, and was then Executive Director for almost ten years. 

For the last nine years of his career he ran media communications and public relations. A keen bass angler, he was a Board Director for the Bass Fishing Hall of Fame for more than ten years and a member of the National Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame Selection Committee.

He was also a prolific author and accomplished photographer in the outdoors field.

When he retired in 2019, Holt said: “I’ll miss the people, especially the folks at the G.Loomis factory and Shimano, because for me it’s always been about the people. I’m proud of our accomplishments as a team.”

Shimano North America President Dave Pfeiffer said: “Bruce was a huge part of the company since its beginnings. He spent his career at G.Loomis as the guiding light of the company.”

Born in Ontario, Oregon, Holt’s love for the outdoors came from time spent fishing and hunting with his father and uncle. He also excelled in sports including baseball, basketball, track and as a quarterback on the football team.

After graduating he majored in art at Boise State University. He lived in several locations in the Pacific Northwest before landing his dream job at G.Loomis in Woodland, Washington.

Holt had three children with his wife of 23 years, Rhonda Oneida. They later parted and in 1997 he met Jean Manninen, with whom he spent the last 24 years. He died after a short battle with cancer.

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