Senseless Murder in Pagosa

cupofjoe04
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I'm writing this with a heavy heart, some real anger, and even more hope. I wanted to let the OB know, because some of you have been here and might have met him. I also would greatly appreciate your prayers for my church, community, and everyone who is grieving.

TLDR: guy tries to rob a local sporting goods store, and ends up murdering one of the nicest men in the world. He was a pillar of our community, and impacted MANY peole's lives. He was a dear friend and beloved family member in my church.


Details- mostly therapy for me to write them out and share

We have a local sporting goods shop in Pagosa Springs called "The Ski & Bow Rack". It is an amazing little place, where you can find some killer gear, hit the archery range. buy a license, or rent skis. It was owned and operated by Larry Fisher, and managed by Bruno, his nephew. If you ever came in and met them, you will certainly remember. Larry was the nicest guy you ever met- 71 years old, in phenomenal shape, white mustache. If you were looking for something, he would walk you through the store and personally ensure you had every question answered. He knew every nook and cranny of these mountains, and generously gave advice to any sportsman. Bruno, well, you can't miss Bruno because he is literally 7 feet tall- a real gentle giant. Always has a smile on his face And took the time to greet and help you, wether you were the only customer or there was a line of people out the door.

Last night, Larry was working by himself after hours. and a guy came in to rob the place.. I'm not exactly sure how the guy got inside. Larry ended up struggling with him before being shot in the chest, and then fought the guy for several minutes after. This piece of trash ended up escaping, with nothing more than a couple jackets. Larry probably would have just GIVEN the guy some merch or money had he just asked. The suspect is still at large. Police have several leads- but the most promising person of interest is still MIA. Pray he gets found- this community needs the closure and security. Most likely guy was a local.

Larry was rushed to the hospital, and then life flighted to Denver- with his daughter (who is an EMS in town) on the plane by his side. He made it to one hospital on the fixed wing, but then they had to take him via helo to another hospital. He crashed en route, daughter still by his side.

I stood in the parking lot with Bruno and some of the employess of the Ski & Bow Rack through the night, just trying to listen and console- just crying with them. They are all like family to each other, and about 3/4 go to my church. As dawn broke, an amazing peace set in as we knew that Larry was seeing his first sunrise in heaven and the amazing fulfillment of his faith in Christ. Then people started showing up to get their ski rentals. So another guy and myself started heading people off, directing them to other rental places in town. We apologized and acknowledge that they had reservations, but said there was a tragedy and the store couldn't fulfill them this morning. Despite the police vehicles with lights on, cops running around, crime scene tape everywhere, and clearly traumatized people standing in circles crying- some people were still ticked that they couldn't get their skis. That really hacked me off- to be honest. But I just tried to be kind, smile, apologize, and send them on down the road.

Larry was the sort of man who would give you the shirt off of his back. When I first moved to Pagosa, I told him I needed advice on a backpacking stove. He told me to come in to the store, and he showed me the nicest MSR stove he had. It was out of my price range, so I thanked him and said I was going to Walmart for a cheaper one. He called me the next day and told me he had one in a "damaged box" he couldn't sell, he would give me a deal on it. He left it at the counter for me, and the only "damage" was where he broke the tape on the box to open and make sure all parts were there... and he wouldn't let me pay him for it. That's the kind of guy he was. SO many men in our town got their first job fitting skis or guiding fly trips for Larry. He always had a team of young men and women he absolutely poured himself into.

He was also a good friend. I only knew him for about 2 years, but we spent a lot of time shoot bows, hiking canyons, chasing mule deer, or nymphing trout together. He was a true man of faith, and a dedicated family member of our church. We spent long hours talking about science and faith, and trying to find God's handiwork in these mountains. I will truly miss him.

Please pray for his family- especially his daughter (who we are very close to, works with my wife) and his nephew, who has to pick up the pieces of the store while dealing with grief. This is their busiest week of the whole year. I am going to go into the store in the morning and see how I can help as they reopen- there will be a crazy line of people wanting to rent/return skis. I've never done that before, but I'm sure there is some sort of grunt work I can help take off the staff's plate.

Pray for us as we try to walk with this family through this tragedy as best we possibly can. This is going to be a LONG week. This is a small mountain town- stuff like this just doesn't happen here. It is sending increaible shock waves though our community. I already have more calls than I can possibly field- but I have to focus on Larry's Family right now.
marcel ledbetter
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I've bought gear in that store more than once. Glad to hear about his faith, though. I can remember when the only sporting goods store in Pagosa was in a log cabin east of the Baptist church. I think it's an atv dealership now.
ursusguy
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Shame to read. Sounds like a good man.
agdaddy04
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Sounds like he brought real meaning to the area and you specifically. I only hope people would remember me the way you just poured out for him. Hope you all find some peace soon and justice is brought against the guy that did it.
schmellba99
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That was tough to read, prayers heading your way good man. You cannot replace him, celebrate his life though.

And catch the POS that shot him.


bam02
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Sorry to hear. May he rest in peace.

Dale Earnhardts Stache
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Been in there many times. Most recently back in February. Awesome little shop. T&P's for the family.
water turkey
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Prayers for family and friends. Somethings just don't make sense to anyone but God.
wadd96
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Sorry to hear this. I'll offer up a prayer for Larry, his family and his friends.

I'll also pray that the evildoer is brought to earthly justice.
"ISIS targeting the U.S. military is like a sheep targeting a lion." - Sgt. Dakota Meyer
spud1910
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Prayers for all of you that loved him. I think I was in his shop about 9 or 10 years ago.
AggiePetro07
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Prayers for his family and friends.
arrow
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This is the shop I frequent when in Pagosa. You're right, you'll never forget Bruno once you meet him and Larry was always extremely helpful to me and my hunting buddies. This is horrible news.
sgerdesii
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This has been our shop in Pagosa for several years. Was literally just in the shop in January buying more gear... Everything you said about Larry is spot on. This is unbelievable. T&Ps!
Cen-Tex
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Sad news. Local newspaper posted photo/description of the perp.

http://www.pagosasun.com/homicide-suspects-photo-released/
NRD09
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Fcking meth. So sorry for your loss.
cupofjoe04
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Yeah- they haven't been able to track down the main person of interest yet. The video was gut wrenching awful, but sadly his camera system was pretty old and it isn't very clear. Got some info to go on, but not a lot. Not a clear pic of the vehicle either. Enough to tell it is a older white SUV, Toyota or Nissan. Was very muddy. I'm sure both the jacket and SUV are ditched by now. I heard there was someone roughly matching this description looking into cars in then WalMart parking lot in Durango a couple hours later- not sure if they found a ditched vehicle matching this or not yet. Someone breaking into cars in Durango is pretty common, though- not necessarily connected.

The white blob in the close up picture of the perp- that is Larry's head. Breaks my heart
agcrock2005
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This sucks. Sorry to the OP and prayers for all involved.
stdeb11
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Thoughts and prayers for you and everyone else dealing with the horrible loss.

And I hope they catch the worthless POS
NRH ag 10
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Sad people were so self absorbed the next morning, but not surprised.

When I was a police officer I witnessed people have a loud, vulgar shouting match over a parking spot while surrounded by grieving family members of the man sitting dead in a garage 20 feet away, and a man angrily banging on the doors as I interviewed a crying gas station clerk about the armed robbery where she had just been held at knife point.

Luckily I was in a position to let those people know they needed to go be *******s somewhere else.
Aggie Vet
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We have used Ski and Bow for the last seven years. My son and his college buds are in Pagosa now and he called me yesterday morning. He he'd talked to Larry Sunday when they picked up ski's. This just sucks. Larry was one of the best and we're saying a prayer for his family.
cupofjoe04
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I just got home after putting in many hours spraying, buckling, and racking ski boots. Crappy job, but it meant 2 staff members got to go home, and the rest could focus on more pleasurable work.

Things I learned-
#1 - peoples feet stink. Wouldn't want to do that full time, for sure. And please, BUCKLE you ski boots before returning them, don't strap them together. Makes the sraff's job 100x easier if the boots are buckled.

#2 - the body of Christ is amazing. The way this town, and specifically our church, has rallied around Larry's family and the Bow Rack is unbelievable. It is impacting people deeply. I got chances to speak when many of the employees, and just let them vent and cry.

#3 - I think, but can't confirm, that they are tightening a net around the prime person of interest. I'm praying that he truns himself in. This has our town all shook up, we need some closure.

Pray for me tomorrow as I meet with the family to help them make funeral plans and arrangements. This is very delicate work, and more taxing than you would believe. I stood in the spot that Larry was shot today and prayed, and tomorrow I will sit with his daughter. It's humbling to say the least.
agcrock2005
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Awful. Prayers man. I'm sure your helping them out is very much appreciated.
sean00
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I'm in Pagosa now and this is a shocking tragedy. Have known Larry for over 30 years through the Ski and Bow Rack. My folks are part time residents of Pagosa and my Dad has skiied with Larry. I spoke to him Sunday afternoon about needing new boots while his awesome staff fit the family for boots and skis. Very sad for his friends and family.
cupofjoe04
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I've heard from several sources that they are closing the net on a guy. Possibly even just waiting on forensics to confirm. I'm not taking it to the bank until I hear it from an official report- but it gives me hope they are near a conclusion.

I sat down with Larry's family today, and I can tell you they are in a good place but could really use the closure. Pray this investigation is over soon, and they catch this turd promptly. This town needs a win right now.
CentralTXag
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T&P. Terrible tragedy. We are in Pagosa Springs for spring break. We saw all the flashing lights and yellow crime scene tape being put up when we drove in and wondered what was going on.
jbryan06
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This was a tough read. Will be praying for the family and the community. That area is near and dear to me as I spent many a summer in the San Juan NF just outside of Pagosa Springs growing up.
LRHF
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Terrible loss. My dad lives in Pagosa and i have been there many times helping my dad with his archery. I hope they catch up with this scumbag...
cupofjoe04
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If you are interested in this story- I'm just gonna say stay closely tuned in the next 24-48 hours. Some really disturbing stuff coming down the pipes right now, this is going to get very messy to handle the fall out. I will update you guys on as much as I can when it becomes official.

I want to say THANK YOU for everyone who has expressed their support- either by posting here, or calling the shop. You voice is being heard, and passed along to Bruno, the family, and the shop staff. How deeply Larry was loved by people all over this country is so evident, and it is so encouraging to the family in this very difficult time.
cupofjoe04
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If anyone is in Pagosa this weekend, and want to show support- I am organizing a Candlelight Prayer Service. Will be Sunday (mar 18) 8:00pm in the Ski & Bow Rack parking lot. The whole shop staff will be there, as well as Larry's family. We are going to do a big cross where people can put flowers in as a tribute.
LSB_2002
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cupofjoe04 said:

If you are interested in this story- I'm just gonna say stay closely tuned in the next 24-48 hours. Some really disturbing stuff coming down the pipes right now, this is going to get very messy to handle the fall out. I will update you guys on as much as I can when it becomes official.

Terrible loss of life!

Can't wait to hear the updated details! Hope they catch the perp soon!
BradMtn346
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This story made my heart just ache. Prayers to everyone touched by this terrible tragedy.
Aggie Vet
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I wish we could be there. Praying for you and everyone at Ski and Bow.
cupofjoe04
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This is an old pic of Larry. There is a tunnel up Wolf Creek Pass, and this is a picture of him doing a backflip off of it one winter. Larry was an absolute stud!



And here he is in his late 60's, still going all out doing what he loved!

AgLawman
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I'm reading that the POS murderer killed himself in Chama, NM.
John Cocktolstoy
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cupofjoe04 said:

This is an old pic of Larry. There is a tunnel up Wolf Creek Pass, and this is a picture of him doing a backflip off of it one winter. Larry was an absolute stud!



And here he is in his late 60's, still going all out doing what he loved!


Freeheeling it in his 60's!!! Awesome!!!
Websider Todd44 GigEm
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