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Goodbye and Thank You to Tom Knapp and Bob Munden

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June 14, 2013

Goodbye and Thank You to Tom Knapp and Bob Munden

By Phil Bourjaily

It has been a sad stretch for fans of exhibition shooting. In a short time we have lost both Tom Knapp and Bob Munden. Knapp, who died at only 62 in April, was best known for his exhibitions with Benelli shotguns, and for throwing up to 10 clay targets in the air at once and breaking them all before they hit the ground. 

A few years ago I got to interview Knapp. He told me he started practicing as a young boy after he discovered Winchester shooter Herb Parsons. He and a neighbor threw dirt clods and shot BBs at them. Later he practiced by throwing and shooting bits of gravel with a .22. This video shows Knapp could do some fancy shooting with rifles as well as shotguns and could hit not only gravel but aspirin tablets in the air.

Bob Munden of Butte, Montana, died at age 70. Once listed in the Guinness World Records as the “fastest man with a gun who ever lived,” Munden was best known for his speed on the draw. He will be missed by the many people he entertained in person and on TV.

If you missed out on seeing Munden when he was alive, his exhibition shooting lives on in video. As this clip shows, Munden wasn’t only a quick-draw artist. He could also just plain shoot. The target is 200 yards away, the gun is a S&W Model 60 in .38 special with a stubby barrel and, therefore, a miniscule sight radius. Yet Munden rings a gong 200 yards away with it.

 

Comments (23)

Top Rated
All Comments
from Ontario Honker ... wrote 43 weeks 4 days ago

Munden did a demonstration at the high school where I was teaching. A very nice guy.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from RJ Arena wrote 43 weeks 4 days ago

Where have all of the real man gone! So few left! Now they will shoot lightning and their hits roar in thunder! I will think of both of them when I watch the next thunderstorm this summer.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from jjas wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

I enjoyed watching both of those men on tv. They were simply amazing!

My condolences go to their families and friends.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from FARMBOY wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

My boys and I saw Tom Knapp 3 times at DU Greenwing days. I don't know who was more impressed, the boys or me. He was a wonderful ambassador for the shooting sports and one hell-a-va good man. We certainly will miss him. Our condolences to his family.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from bradshaw@pa.net wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

Both were remarkable men. I will especially miss the baritone voice of Tom Knapp. There was just something about it that said 'this is a real man with a voice you can trust.'

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Tim Platt wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

Seeing this guy shooting aspirin in the air reminds me of the post Dave wrote about shooting at a deer from 350 yards or so and everyone gave him a hard time... if you practice enough the impossible becomes mundane.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from SoCalGunNut wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

We lost two irreplaceable ambassadors for the shooting sports community. Thank you to Tom and Bob for your contributions and my condolences to their families and friends.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from swatjob357 wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

Both were great guys!
RIP!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from ishawooa wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

Wonderful ambassadors (sp?) for shooting sports and very interesting to speak to about numerous subjects. Tom came to Cody a few years ago to retire his well used Benellis for display in the BBHC. He was kind enough to autograph one of his fired shotgun shells for my son after a spectacular shooting demonstration. One of my employees grew up in Butte. He said the highlight of his elementary education was the day that Bob came to grade school to give a shooting demonstration free to all the kids.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from buckhunter wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

Great entertainers, gentlemen and athletes.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from kudukid wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

Guns are tools and these men were artisans with theirs!

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from nc30-06 wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

I never got to meet either except on tv. Both were professionals and gentlemen. They will be sorely missed.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from PbHead wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

I saw Ted perform three times and spoke to him at the NRA Annual Meeting. He exemplifies the word class. A true gentleman. God bless him and his family.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from tleichty1989 wrote 43 weeks 2 days ago

They'll be missed!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from elmer f. wrote 43 weeks 2 days ago

Tom Knapp was my favorite performer. i really enjoyed his style, confidence, and the way he made even ridiculous shots, look easy. of course, that is what thousands and thousands of hours, learning one trick shot will get you. the appearance that it is easy. i know nothing of the mans personal life, but he seemed like a decent enough fellow. i can only hope he was 10 times as good to his family, as he was with a gun. Tom, you will be missed. as for Mr. Bob Munden, i have only seen a few taped performances of him. his performances were amazing to say the least.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from haverodwilltravel wrote 43 weeks 2 days ago

God bless them both.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from mspl8sdcntryboy wrote 43 weeks 2 days ago

"Who's gonna fill their shoes? Who's gonna stand that tall?"- George Jones

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from deadeyedick wrote 43 weeks 1 day ago

Ive opened a fresh bottle of Crown Royal so here's to you Tom and Bob, you will be sorely missed, bottoms up

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ty66ty66 wrote 43 weeks 1 day ago

This was the most amazing thing I have ever seen and your going to try to tell me they are dead

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from GERG wrote 42 weeks 6 days ago

Ive watched both of these Gentlmen and they were Gentlemen. God bless thier familes. May they both rest in peace at the grand shooting range in Heaven.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from patriot2674 wrote 42 weeks 4 days ago

I enjoyed watching both gentlemen on television. They will be missed. On "Impossible Shots", I enjoyed the friendly rivalry between Bob Munden and Byron Ferguson.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from johnh4260 wrote 40 weeks 3 days ago

I enjoyed watching both of these great performers for countless hours. They were both great Americans and their passing is a loss for us all. May they rest in peace.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from JFHALL wrote 40 weeks 21 min ago

Prayers and condolences for the loss of these two exceptional human beings. Nothing good lasts forever, prepare yea the way. Amen.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

from RJ Arena wrote 43 weeks 4 days ago

Where have all of the real man gone! So few left! Now they will shoot lightning and their hits roar in thunder! I will think of both of them when I watch the next thunderstorm this summer.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from jjas wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

I enjoyed watching both of those men on tv. They were simply amazing!

My condolences go to their families and friends.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from SoCalGunNut wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

We lost two irreplaceable ambassadors for the shooting sports community. Thank you to Tom and Bob for your contributions and my condolences to their families and friends.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from bradshaw@pa.net wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

Both were remarkable men. I will especially miss the baritone voice of Tom Knapp. There was just something about it that said 'this is a real man with a voice you can trust.'

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from ishawooa wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

Wonderful ambassadors (sp?) for shooting sports and very interesting to speak to about numerous subjects. Tom came to Cody a few years ago to retire his well used Benellis for display in the BBHC. He was kind enough to autograph one of his fired shotgun shells for my son after a spectacular shooting demonstration. One of my employees grew up in Butte. He said the highlight of his elementary education was the day that Bob came to grade school to give a shooting demonstration free to all the kids.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from kudukid wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

Guns are tools and these men were artisans with theirs!

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ontario Honker ... wrote 43 weeks 4 days ago

Munden did a demonstration at the high school where I was teaching. A very nice guy.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from swatjob357 wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

Both were great guys!
RIP!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from buckhunter wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

Great entertainers, gentlemen and athletes.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from FARMBOY wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

My boys and I saw Tom Knapp 3 times at DU Greenwing days. I don't know who was more impressed, the boys or me. He was a wonderful ambassador for the shooting sports and one hell-a-va good man. We certainly will miss him. Our condolences to his family.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Tim Platt wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

Seeing this guy shooting aspirin in the air reminds me of the post Dave wrote about shooting at a deer from 350 yards or so and everyone gave him a hard time... if you practice enough the impossible becomes mundane.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from elmer f. wrote 43 weeks 2 days ago

Tom Knapp was my favorite performer. i really enjoyed his style, confidence, and the way he made even ridiculous shots, look easy. of course, that is what thousands and thousands of hours, learning one trick shot will get you. the appearance that it is easy. i know nothing of the mans personal life, but he seemed like a decent enough fellow. i can only hope he was 10 times as good to his family, as he was with a gun. Tom, you will be missed. as for Mr. Bob Munden, i have only seen a few taped performances of him. his performances were amazing to say the least.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from mspl8sdcntryboy wrote 43 weeks 2 days ago

"Who's gonna fill their shoes? Who's gonna stand that tall?"- George Jones

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from GERG wrote 42 weeks 6 days ago

Ive watched both of these Gentlmen and they were Gentlemen. God bless thier familes. May they both rest in peace at the grand shooting range in Heaven.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from patriot2674 wrote 42 weeks 4 days ago

I enjoyed watching both gentlemen on television. They will be missed. On "Impossible Shots", I enjoyed the friendly rivalry between Bob Munden and Byron Ferguson.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from johnh4260 wrote 40 weeks 3 days ago

I enjoyed watching both of these great performers for countless hours. They were both great Americans and their passing is a loss for us all. May they rest in peace.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from nc30-06 wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

I never got to meet either except on tv. Both were professionals and gentlemen. They will be sorely missed.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from PbHead wrote 43 weeks 3 days ago

I saw Ted perform three times and spoke to him at the NRA Annual Meeting. He exemplifies the word class. A true gentleman. God bless him and his family.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from tleichty1989 wrote 43 weeks 2 days ago

They'll be missed!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from haverodwilltravel wrote 43 weeks 2 days ago

God bless them both.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from deadeyedick wrote 43 weeks 1 day ago

Ive opened a fresh bottle of Crown Royal so here's to you Tom and Bob, you will be sorely missed, bottoms up

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ty66ty66 wrote 43 weeks 1 day ago

This was the most amazing thing I have ever seen and your going to try to tell me they are dead

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from JFHALL wrote 40 weeks 21 min ago

Prayers and condolences for the loss of these two exceptional human beings. Nothing good lasts forever, prepare yea the way. Amen.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

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