Today is a sad day for everyone in wild steelhead conservation, as a giant in the space, Frank Moore, has passed away at age 98. If you ask most folks in the PNW, they will tell you that the work Frank and Jeanie Moore undertook in their lifetimes is one of the main reasons there are still wild steelhead in the North Umpqua River. Their impact was so great, that in February of 2019, the Frank and Jeanie Moore Steelhead Sanctuary was founded protecting 100,000 acres of the North Umpqua River.
But wild steelhead was just one part of Frank’s selfless contributions to the United States. Frank was also a decorated WWII Veteran who landed on the beaches of Normandy during the D-Day Invasion and went on to fight deep into the European theater afterward, earning the French Legion d’Honneur in the process for his heroic and selfless actions.
Frank credits his time in the war with discovering his love of fly fishing. After he returned home, Frank suffered from PTSD, which led him to find peace on the river. His love affair with the Umpqua and its wild steelhead began shortly thereafter.
Oregon Congressman Peter DeFazio released a public statement about Frank’s passing saying:
“I am deeply saddened to hear the news that my friend Frank Moore has passed away at the age of 98. Frank’s contributions and service to the state of Oregon was monumental. A local World War II veteran and avid fly fisherman, Frank was one of the foremost conservationists in our state’s history. He served on the State of Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission from 1971 to 1974 and has been repeatedly recognized for his efforts to preserve fish habitats.
“I’m proud to have worked with him to designate the 100,000 acres in the Steamboat Creek watershed in Umpqua national forest for steelhead salmon preservation. The Special Management Area will forever bear his name, and we will honor his work to conserve our natural world for generations. Rest in peace, Frank.”
He is survived by his wife Jeanie Moore and passed away surrounded by family on Sunday, January 23rd.
To learn more about Frank’s impact on wild steelhead and the Frank and Jeanie Moore Steelhead Sanctuary, you can read the video or articles linked below.
“Frank Moore, WWII veteran and legendary fly fisherman dead at 98” – The News-Review