October was a somber month for New Jersey hunters and anglers as word spread of the passing of a couple of outdoors legends.
On October 8, Joseph Julian of Atlantic Highlands passed away at the age of 94. The owner of Julian’s Bait and Tackle in Atlantic Highlands and originator/namesake of the Julian’s Montauk Bunker Spoon, Joe was a longtime fixture at the family shop where one of his favorite pastimes was welcoming friends and customers to have a cup of coffee and good conversation.
“If a book is ever written about the early days of fishing along the northern New Jersey Shore, Joe Julian will surely be among the leading characters,” wrote Capt. Al Ristori at Julian’s passing. “Joe, who also had a big ice business across the road, popularized his Montauk bunker spoons which feature a single large Siwash hook that was a big improvement over the huge built-in hook on standard bunker spoons which required the addition of a large treble hook to be effective– but damaged a lot of stripers and blues that were to be released,” Ristori added.
Joe Julian had accomplished many things during his life, learning to fly a single-engine plane as a teenager (which he continued to do well into his 50’s). He also had a passion for racing Jersey Speed Skiffs and was regarded as the first boatbuilder to build a Jersey Speed Skiff out of fiberglass, shattering records wherever he raced. He was predeceased by his wife Margaret (nee Lee), and is survived by his daughters Alexandra Pesacreta and Francesca Julian and his son Joseph Julian, as well as a granddaughter Jessica Julian-Andrews.
On October 18, George P. Howard of Pittstown, New Jersey died at home at the age of 95. He worked for the New Jersey Division of Fish and Game from 1950 until 1990 as wildlife worker, Wildlife Management Supervisor, Bureau Chief and finally Director of New Jersey Division of Fish and Game. He also served on the New Jersey Sportsman Fish and Game Council from 1990-2001.
George was an avid sportsman who was dedicated to the conservation of wildlife and was actively involved in many organizations including the New Jersey State Federation of Sportsman’s Clubs where he had served as executive director. He attended Seton Hall College before entering the Marine Corps, and graduated from the New York College of Forestry at Syracuse University with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Forestry with a minor in Wildlife Management.
Born in Newark in 1925, George Patrick was pre-deceased by his wife of 65 years Jean and two brothers, the late congressman James J. Howard and Robert M. Howard.