The Deer Hunter
Tuesday, December 12, 2023
There are some people you fall in love with the first time you meet them.
That was true of Chet, and it was also true of Michael.
I first met Chet in early November when he approached a breakfast table of men.
It was the first week of deer season. One of the men said, “Chet, how’d you do?”
He smiled. “I got two, and one was a fine eight-point.”
“You really enjoy hunting, don’t you?”
“I do.” Then Chet’s demeanor changed, and his voice became choked “But what I like best is taking folks hunting who could never kill a deer on their own.”
Chet described this apparatus he’d built to aid an immobile person to hunt. He’d build this contraption with knobs and adjustments to sight in the rifle, including a blowing straw that pulls the trigger.
I listened with interest. I’ve got to see this in action.
Chet continued. “That’s the real joy I get from hunting.”
He described a memorable hunt with a younger man, and I realized he was speaking of my friend Michael.
I fell in love with Michael the first time I met him. We worship together, he is a friends of my son, and we share a deep love for Major League Baseball.
Michael has been confined to a wheelchair all of his life, but that’s the only way he’s confined.
He has a college degree, loves God, has a fine sense of humor, and is fanatical about his Atlanta Braves. I admire and love Michael, and you would enjoy meeting him.
Chet took Michael deer hunting, and that’s the best part of the story.
I’ll let Chet tell it:
“We got Michael situated in a stand and showed him how everything worked.
“The first few opportunities passed without success, but then it happened.
“A good-sized buck came into view on the scope, and when the crosshairs settled on the deer, Michael blew a puff, and the buck went down.
“Michael yelled as loudly as I’ve heard a man holler. You could probably hear him all the way into LaSalle Parish. “I was standing with his dad, Mickey, and both of us shouted and cried.”
Chet glanced around our table. “And Guys, that’s how I like to hunt.”
I started crying as Chet told this story. It moved me deeply, which is never a bad thing.
You may have a lump in your throat as you read this story. That’s a good thing.
That’s why stories are so powerful. They move us, sometimes to tears.
Chet and Michael’s story is a good one for this holiday season.
It is a Christmas reminder that it truly is better to give than receive.
Merry Christmas 2023
“No tears in the writer. No tears in the reader.”
Alexandria, LA/Dry Creek, LA