Jul 20th, 2016
The Fly Water team has heavy hearts today as we’ve learned of the news that our friend Moana Kofe from Christmas Island has passed away. He was more than simply a legendary guide, but truly a warm and charming human being who was deeply connected to his home. Anyone that was fortunate enough to spend time walking the flats with Moana felt his unbridled enthusiasm to share his island and an intimate, bordering on spiritual knowledge of the flats.
When I last fished with Moana we were working a lengthy vein in the flat that extended for about 200 yards. It was only a 10 foot wide depression in the sand maybe 2 to 3 inches deeper than the rest of the surrounding expanse of the flat and nearly imperceptible to the untrained eye. Moana knew the fish used the seam on a falling tide. As we creeped along catching one bonefish after another, Moana never stopped teaching, laughing, asking questions and noticing new things that even he had not seen in 40 years of Christmas Island history. He still had the fire for guiding and teaching, even after watching many thousands of fish caught and a lifetime of wading the flats. Even me hooking a fish and landing it wouldn’t disrupt his beautiful explanations of the interconnected life systems around us, how they worked on Christmas Island and how he used this knowledge to find fish.
His boyish chuckle when a small snapper stole your fly out of the face of a bonefish, his gentle treatment of a waywardly hooked frigate bird, or his patient and kind advice on how to be a better flats angler was endearing, professional and always a pleasure. We will miss him greatly, as we know that all who fished with him will as well.
Please see Moldy Chum’s post for more amazing sentiments and fantastic images of Moana: http://www.moldychum.com/rip-moana-kofi/
We have set up a Go Fund Me campaign in Moana’s honor that will benefit the outstanding organization Pacific Island Medical Aid.