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‑Ray McCune, a feature editor, cooking columnist, and humor columnist for MidWest Outdoors, a popular outdoor magazine, was recently notified of winning one of the top places in the hearts of the magazine’s more than 65,000 monthly readers.

Ray, an outdoor freelance writer and author of a recently published book of humor, HOW TO EAT A WILD GREEN PANCAKE and other humorous tales,‑was notified by Gene Laulunen, editor & publisher of MWO magazine, that he was voted one of the top writers in the main section of the magazine and as one of the top writers of the Indiana Section.‑In telling the readers the results of the MWO Readers’ Choice Contest, he stated, “The past four months we have received over 3,000 readers’ votes for their favorite writers.‑Hundreds of respondents said they love all the writers, and they couldn’t pick one over the others.‑With over 150 writers to choose from it is a difficult job.‑Here are the top vote-getters for the main section.‑The winners for the different state sections will be featured in their respective sections.‑When you read about the ideas and backgrounds of these writers, you will understand why we are very proud to have these writers in our MidWest Outdoors’ family.‑This is the finest collection of outdoor writers in the nation.‑We would like to thank all who sent in their ballots.‑This helps us continue our mission: HELPING PEOPLE ENJOY THE OUTDOORS.”

Among the readers’ choices for MidWest Outdoors ‘main’ section writers‑ (in alphabetical order) are: Dan Basore, Phil Cadez, Roger Cormier, Mike Cyze, Capt., Dan Galusha, Dave Genz, Ray Hansen, Adam Johnson, Keith Kavajecz, Dan Keating, Larry Ladowski, Tim Lesmeister, Mark Martin, Walt Matan, Ray McCune, Mike Mladenik, Dr. Ken Nordberg, Jerry Pabst, Gary Parsons, Scott Richardson, Gary Roach, Jim Saric, Jack Schwab, Ted Takasaki, Jack Schwab, Mick Thill, Babe Winkelman, and Gregg Thomas. MidWest Outdoors readers’ choice contest winning ‘Indiana’ Writers include: Tom Berg – Dyer, IN, Dave Dyer – Chesterton, IN, Phil Junker – Derby, IN, Ray McCune – Fort Wayne, IN, Ed Mullady – Kankakee, IL, Mike Ratter – Calumet City, IL, Jack Spaulding – Milroy, IN, and Bill Takacs – Hammond, IN.

Born in Gassaway, West Virginia, Ray is the son of Blanche and Bruce McCune (both deceased).‑ He is a Navy veteran and a member of American Legion Waynedale Post #241 in Fort Wayne, Indiana.‑He’s a Life Member of the National Rifle Association, and has been a Boy Scout leader for 25+ years.‑Ray graduated from Gassaway High School, the U.S. Navy School of Electronics, attended Santa Ana College in California where he majored in Journalism, and graduated from Indiana University/Fort Wayne.‑He retired from GTE in 1993 and turned to his love of writing as a second career.‑Ray was Associate Editor for The Waynedale News for 5 years from 1999 to 2004; and is now an Outdoor Freelance Writer full time and has authored several hundred articles that were published in various publications.‑He is a self-proclaimed Dutch oven chef and is writing a cookbook called KAMPFIRE KOOKIN’, which he says will be like an unofficial Boy Scout cookbook. Ray is currently working on two more books of fiction humor, which he says will be collections of his best Humor Corner Columns which have appeared in MidWest Outdoors magazine and elsewhere.‑Ray is married and the father of one daughter and four sons.‑Ray and his wife Joanne reside in Waynedale, Indiana; they have eight grandchildren.


A MidWest Outdoors’ interview with Ray McCune:


MWO: How long have you been writing for MidWest Outdoors?

Ray: First article? 1983.‑ First column? 1996.

MWO: What is your favorite outdoor activity?‑ Where do you like to go?

Ray: I like writing about outdoor activities that I do (hunting, fishing, camping, and cooking) and I enjoy making people laugh.‑I like Salamonie Reservoir and the Pigeon River Fish & Wildlife Area in Indiana and my brother’s log cabin in West Virginia.

MWO: Who is your outdoor hero?

Ray: I have two, my brother Joe, who was the inspiration for my book (How To Eat A Wild Green Pancake), and Patrick F. McManus, a writer/humorist for Outdoor Life magazine.

MWO: What is the most rewarding experience of your career?

Ray: Being recognized by Patrick F. McManus as “. . . a fellow humorist.‑I sent him a column comparing his writing to mine.‑He wrote back and said, “you’re funny!‑ You have a nice comic touch that should carry you a long ways, even in this tough business.”

MWO: What is your favorite piece of outdoor equipment?

Ray: I have two: a hunting knife, my brother made for me and a 14-inch steel camping skillet, that my Mom and Dad were given when they got married.

MWO: Do you have a favorite motto or any words of wisdom?

Ray: My dad used to say, “If you ain’t havin’ fun doin’ whut yer doin’, then you shouldn’t be doin’ whut yer doin’,” and to me, that says it all.

Oh, and he also said, “Anyone can be ordinary!”

MWO: What is your most memorable outdoor experience?

Ray: Honeymooning with Joanne, in a tent, in the pouring rain, dining on cold pork and beans, and toasting marshmallows over a Coleman lantern inside a wet, soggy umbrella tent.‑That was also her very first camping experience.‑She still speaks to me.


REF. – December 2005 Issue of MidWest Outdoors Magazine – Page 40 Main Section and Page 108 Indiana Section)

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