This picture of a man dwarfed by a fish is evidence of the extraordinary prowess of Jerry Coughlan, top man in the plug casting division of the Metropolitan Miami Fishing Tournament for the past eight years. As leading contender for the 1957 championship with this 137½-pound tarpon taken in 12 minutes on a 15-pound test line off Islamorada, Fla., Coughlan will probably get his ninth Outstanding Angling Achievement Award. His phenomenal record shows that this is his 38th tarpon weighing more than 100 pounds taken on regulation tackle under Miami tournament rules—in a division in which only three other anglers have ever caught tarpon exceeding that weight.
Fishing and excelling in sports come naturally to Coughlan. Born in Youghal, County Cork, Eire, he fished the Blackwater, famed for its great salmon and trout, as a boy. He was a talented half-miler and in 1928 set an Irish record for the distance (1:56.6) that stood for 27 years—until broken by Ron Delany. In 1932 he accompanied the Irish track team to Los Angeles for the Olympic Games, and on a post-Games visit in the East met an East Orange, N.J. girl, fell in love and decided to settle in the U.S.
Nowadays, with Mrs. Coughlan and their three children, he makes his home in Caldwell, N.J. and is president of his own manufacturing firm. When time allows, he's off to Florida's great tarpon fishing grounds to meet the challenge of trying to better his record catch.