Mourning the Passing of Corey Carl Mood

by Suju M.T. Mukkatira

Like countless others, I was shocked this week by the unexpected passing Corey Mood, of James L. Mood Fisheries. I’m writing this post to share some perspectives drawn from my own brief but very meaningful experience with Corey. My deepest condolences to his family, friends and community. 

His obituary is here –

I met Corey in person for the first time just a few short weeks ago at his facility in Woods Harbour. This was after a couple of phone conversations together, so I had some idea of what to expect but had not yet fully appreciated the high-quality person I was about to sit down with for a discussion. While there is much to be said on this point, it would be inappropriate for me to publicize important parts of our conversation, so I’m not going to do that, but still there are a few points that I want to make here.

Firstly,  the obituary states: ‘the one thing he loved more than fish was family’ – and they sure are correct about that. It was evident to me from the first conversation I had with Corey how much valued and loved his family and took particular pride in his role as a steward and protector of their family business. It seemed important to Corey that he articulate this to me so that I could understand the basis for his own thinking.

At the outset of our meeting, he bluntly stated in no uncertain terms that if my interests were to ever run counter to those of his family that there would be problems. In fact, he delivered this message so bluntly that our mutual friend was in the room with us became uncomfortable and offered to leave the room so we could ‘have a private discussion’. I replied that there is no problem at all, nobody needed to leave the room and that I appreciate this bluntly delivered truth rather than the weaselly lies that are all too common in modern society. One of the main points that I hope Corey’s two young grandsons (and all his descendants) will know as they grow older is that their grandfather was fearless, determined, selfless and would stop at nothing to protect his family’s interests for present and future generations.

After the initial exchanges that I think helped him to better understand where I was coming from, we had an excellent discussion together for well an hour. He shared a lot of insight openly with me and I learned things that you really cannot learn from other sources. It permanently changed my viewpoint on many aspects of the commercial fishing and seafood sectors. There was no tangible reason for Corey to share these things with me, and yet he did so rather generously. On top of that he offered some great advice that I began putting into practice that very day and every day since then. I also learned some good one-liners from him … Corey had a good sense of humour.

As a final point, one of the things I like most about the fishing industry is that it’s possibly the last corner of society where some elements of true personal freedom still survive. It’s slipping away fast, sadly, but Corey and others like him still understand and value freedom far more than most people and recognize its precarity in modern society. I find that people in the fishing industry are among the very few who recognize that their ancestors who settled in Canada centuries ago would be horrified by the repressive socialism under which we as Canadians live today. In most cases the sacrifices made, and the hopes and dreams that the earliest Canadians had for their descendants is long gone. In practicality, their determination and fighting spirit are nowhere to be found among Canadians today. I want Corey’s grandsons and other descendants to know that they’re part of a multigenerational struggle for freedom and independence, and that Corey was seriously committed to safeguarding that freedom during his time at the helm.

In my view Corey was a first-rate gentleman and I hope that’s how he’s always remembered that way within his family and community for generations to come.