Tribute to Rockwood’s Joe Munster

Joe Munster died suddenly on December 5, at 51 years of age. We lost one of the Moosehead region’s best people. He was from the Munster family in Rockwood. He lived for hunting, fishing, and trapping, was a Maine guide, and a great teacher of hunter safety to young kids coming up. He lived large, was larger than life, and could fill a room just by his sheer personality. He could rub some adults the wrong way because he was outspoken and told it just like he saw it. No kid was beyond his reach. He inspired them with his knowledge and pride about their homeland and his wicked sense of humor that gave even the shyest kid something to laugh over and latch onto. He calling card was “Half Man; Half Amazing!” Or, as I like to remember him: Half Cat and All Wild. We knew each other and could talk over just about anything. He was hilarious. He was a terrible tease and he knew some outrageous stories. jmunster2The mold broke when he was made. He was a force to be reckoned with, and ran with a big heart. He will surely be missed here. He always made sure I left his company with a smile on my face and a light step in my feet.

In tribute to Joe, a hunting story he might’ve liked goes like this. This one hunter up in the north country came across a button buck and took a shot. It ended up not to be a kill shot and wounded it in the shoulder. He followed the blood trail until the trail ran out, then lost the track. The hunter and his friends never found the deer. About a week later, another hunter was out. It was the last day of the season. It was nearing dark. The hunter was walking some bush, looked up, and happened to see some movement out through a clearing at a nearby lake. It was a deer, doing an odd thing. The deer was lying butt end in the shallows of the lake just beyond the trees, its hind legs were sunk in, head crouched low, peering outward from the water, searching toward the trees. The hunter raised his gun and shot the deer dead. Turns out, the shot scared off a pack of coyotes that had been chasing the deer. His shot put an end to that hunt. The man hunter went to the deer and saw that it was the one that had been wounded the week before by the first hunter. The wound had turned gangrene, weakening the young buck, making him a prime target for the coyote kill. The man hunter cut the shoulder off the button buck, and brought the rest of the meat home.

~ Suzanne M. AuClair, MHS executive director