Eileen, along with her late husband Harold, ran the Demarest Company. Established in the late 1800's this company was the importer of bamboo for the overwhelming majority of fishing rods. If you have ever held a bamboo rod in your hands, it's more than likely made from cane that the Demarests imported.
Eileen took over the business entirely after her husband passed away. She was very good at what she did. Whenever you called the company to order bamboo, it was Eileen you talked to. She had a personal relationship with all her clients. As a result, she was a link to all rod makers, both amateur & legendary. She was a knowledgeable, kind, trusting, & honest business person. I will always remember fondly the way Eileen treated me as a customer & the conversations we had over the phone. I never met Eileen in person. That was my loss, but from the small (but many) conversations we had over the phone, I felt like I knew her well enough to call her a friend. I suspect all her customers felt that way.
Eileen retired from the business a couple of years ago, setting up the business to carry on for future generations. The Demarests did more for rod makers than anybody else. You cannot tell the complete story of American fishing without mentioning them. Rod makers & anglers everywhere benefited from Eileen's hard work & professionalism.
A while ago, rod maker Jeff Wagner interviewed the Demarests. It was an entertaining & informative telling of the Demarest story. Please, read it HERE.
To Eileen's family & loved ones, I offer you all my deepest sympathies.