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Range time with Dad

benstt

Professional
Founding Member
I got to take my dad to my outdoor range this Saturday. It's over an hour from his place meaning we had plenty of time to talk about nothing in particular in the Jeep, which we haven't had a chance to do for a while. I brought my VP40, 686, and Super Redhawk .44. He's an old paratrooper but he's been target shooting maybe 5 times since he left the Army. For a guy who never spent any time with handguns in the service, he did really good! It took him 5 shots to get the VP40 on the 10" steel gong at 15 yards but then he hit it at will. He didn't have any trouble with the revolvers. He even gave the Buffalo Bore +P+ .44 rounds a try and got a kick out of watching how they threw the gong around. We stopped to grab a burger on the way back to his house. It was a good day all around.
 
Sounds like a wonderful day, I'm glad you both had a good time. My old man is disabled and can't get out very easily but during all these last few years, he'll still talk about guns all day long, which is right up my alley, so we always have good conversation. He was completely enthralled this last weekend with my new Sig Sauer. He kept asking me if he could hold it and look at it. I haven't seen him that enamored with a handgun in quite a while. He very much liked it.
 

Sld1959

Professional
I got to take my dad to my outdoor range this Saturday. It's over an hour from his place meaning we had plenty of time to talk about nothing in particular in the Jeep, which we haven't had a chance to do for a while. I brought my VP40, 686, and Super Redhawk .44. He's an old paratrooper but he's been target shooting maybe 5 times since he left the Army. For a guy who never spent any time with handguns in the service, he did really good! It took him 5 shots to get the VP40 on the 10" steel gong at 15 yards but then he hit it at will. He didn't have any trouble with the revolvers. He even gave the Buffalo Bore +P+ .44 rounds a try and got a kick out of watching how they threw the gong around. We stopped to grab a burger on the way back to his house. It was a good day all around.
Wonderful... Enjoy the time, it does not last forever and you miss it when it's over. My dad passed last Dec.. and I am going through that now.
 
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Bassbob

Ronin
I got to take my dad to my outdoor range this Saturday. It's over an hour from his place meaning we had plenty of time to talk about nothing in particular in the Jeep, which we haven't had a chance to do for a while. I brought my VP40, 686, and Super Redhawk .44. He's an old paratrooper but he's been target shooting maybe 5 times since he left the Army. For a guy who never spent any time with handguns in the service, he did really good! It took him 5 shots to get the VP40 on the 10" steel gong at 15 yards but then he hit it at will. He didn't have any trouble with the revolvers. He even gave the Buffalo Bore +P+ .44 rounds a try and got a kick out of watching how they threw the gong around. We stopped to grab a burger on the way back to his house. It was a good day all around.
Fantastic. I miss spending days like that with my dad. He can't get around so well anymore. So enjoy them while you can brother.
 

Bassbob

Ronin
Sounds like a wonderful day, I'm glad you both had a good time. My old man is disabled and can't get out very easily but during all these last few years, he'll still talk about guns all day long, which is right up my alley, so we always have good conversation. He was completely enthralled this last weekend with my new Sig Sauer. He kept asking me if he could hold it and look at it. I haven't seen him that enamored with a handgun in quite a while. He very much liked it.

Kind of a similar situation with my dad. He can still get out a little, but not often and not for long.
 
Kind of a similar situation with my dad. He can still get out a little, but not often and not for long.
Yes sir, my dad is much the same. He has balance issues due to a head injury a quite a few years ago and it's starting to affect his cognitive skills now, as the docs all told us it would eventually. He has good days mentally, but he sits a lot due to getting up makes him dizzy and he's fallen several times over the last couple of years. But, I can remember him before the accident. He never missed deer season be it bow season, black powder, or modern weapons. Most of my memories of my dad are of him wearing camouflage of some sort because he was always out in the woods either hunting or scouting for new places to hunt.

This is off topic, but now I'm thinking about it, sorry.

Two years ago, on my birthday in November, my dad gave me his Remington model 742 Woodsmaster .308 carbine semi-auto rifle. He bought it around 1976 and it's the only rifle I can ever remember him carrying when we went to deer camp. That was always my favorite week of the year, even though I was very young, I remember my dad always willing to show me what he knew about tracking, picking out places to hunt, and trail craft in general. I was always very attentive because it was all fascinating to me back then. My dad grew up in the Ouachita mountains of southwestern Arkansas and knew his business when it came to living off the land, hunting, and fishing. The .308 rifle was very special to him, it was the first rifle he had been able to save up and buy after he and my mom married in 1972. He eventually put a Leupold scope on it much later but back then he had a Tasco scope on it, but he was a very good shot, a natural shooter if there ever was one, and he taught me at a very early age to respect firearms, how to use them, take care of them, but most of all, to not be afraid of them. When he gave me the rifle, he told me he didn't want to wait until he died because he knew he wouldn't ever be able to use the rifle to hunt with. He told me the only way he could part with his .308 was the fact he knew it would be safe with me. He told me to make sure it stayed in the family and to do him a personal favor and keep it up and in working order just in case. I told him I would, and I have. I took it out of its case about a month ago to run a cleaning cloth over it and, as always when I see his rifle, my rifle now I suppose, I always think back to a day in November long ago, when my dad and I were able to make a bit of hunter's magic between us.

In 1982, on the opening day of deer season while we were sitting by a tree overlooking a clear cut valley, my dad saw movement about 100 yards away down the hill by a small creek that ran thru the valley. I was ten years old, almost, and had graduated from just being a participant at deer camp to carrying a single shot, breech load .410 shotgun which I had been given a box of slugs, my own hunting vest and the works that year. As I scanned the valley looking for movement with my binoculars my dad tapped me on the shoulder, put a finger to his lips to indicate "quiet" and pointed down the hill. I followed his eyes and saw a very healthy 7-point buck drinking out of the creek. I watched my dad bring his rifle up to his shoulder very slowly and take in a long breath, then watched him, the whole time I'm watching my dad, not the deer, I remember that distinctly. I didn't take my eyes off him until I heard the crack of the first shot, very loud in the quiet morning. Dad took aim with his .308 and fired one shot, but hit the deer further back than he had aimed. He told me later he had put the crooshairs right behind the shoulder but it looked like the deer turned at the last second, else it would have all been over right there. We were sitting on a trail going up a very steep hill and the deer turned and ran directly toward us instead of away from us. Dad had four shots left and shot at the deer four more times as it ran toward us, zigging and zagging all over the place. Dad's rifle clicked on the last shot and about that time the deer, finally seeing us, stopped dead in its tracks about 15 yards away. I had already brought my shotgun to my shoulder without thinking, and I vaguely remember my dad saying "I'm empty!" as I cocked the hammer back like he'd trained me to, and put the front bead sight right on the deer's head. I pulled the trigger and the deer dropped before I realized what had happened. I'd put the slug right thru the deer's left ear and the results were immediate. The deer was dead by the time we walked up to it. My dad had hit it in the stomach and I had finished it off. I had never seen my dad express so much emotion. We ended up getting our picture in the very small local newspaper because it was the opening day of hunting season, always a special event where I grew up. The picture is of my dad and I holding up the deer by the antlers, he's using his left hand, me using my right hand. Both of us with huge smiles on our faces. In his right hand is that Remington 742 Woodsmaster .308 carbine....the same one that sits silent in my gun closet now. In my left hand in that old picture is the Springfield/Savage single shot .410 shotgun that I used to take down the 7-point buck my dad and I teamed up on. My dad has that picture framed and hung up beside the deer antlers from that 7-point buck on the wall next to his side of the bed. It's been hanging there for as long as I can remember and he'll tell the story to anyone who wants to hear it, and I still like to listen to him tell it, especially around deer season. I keep both weapons close to one another in my gun closet so when I see them, I can always look back on the best memory I ever had with my dad. It was a good day which seems so long ago but some days, like today, it seems like it was yesterday.
 

KillerFord1977

Ronin
Founding Member
Yes sir, my dad is much the same. He has balance issues due to a head injury a quite a few years ago and it's starting to affect his cognitive skills now, as the docs all told us it would eventually. He has good days mentally, but he sits a lot due to getting up makes him dizzy and he's fallen several times over the last couple of years. But, I can remember him before the accident. He never missed deer season be it bow season, black powder, or modern weapons. Most of my memories of my dad are of him wearing camouflage of some sort because he was always out in the woods either hunting or scouting for new places to hunt.

This is off topic, but now I'm thinking about it, sorry.

Two years ago, on my birthday in November, my dad gave me his Remington model 742 Woodsmaster .308 carbine semi-auto rifle. He bought it around 1976 and it's the only rifle I can ever remember him carrying when we went to deer camp. That was always my favorite week of the year, even though I was very young, I remember my dad always willing to show me what he knew about tracking, picking out places to hunt, and trail craft in general. I was always very attentive because it was all fascinating to me back then. My dad grew up in the Ouachita mountains of southwestern Arkansas and knew his business when it came to living off the land, hunting, and fishing. The .308 rifle was very special to him, it was the first rifle he had been able to save up and buy after he and my mom married in 1972. He eventually put a Leupold scope on it much later but back then he had a Tasco scope on it, but he was a very good shot, a natural shooter if there ever was one, and he taught me at a very early age to respect firearms, how to use them, take care of them, but most of all, to not be afraid of them. When he gave me the rifle, he told me he didn't want to wait until he died because he knew he wouldn't ever be able to use the rifle to hunt with. He told me the only way he could part with his .308 was the fact he knew it would be safe with me. He told me to make sure it stayed in the family and to do him a personal favor and keep it up and in working order just in case. I told him I would, and I have. I took it out of its case about a month ago to run a cleaning cloth over it and, as always when I see his rifle, my rifle now I suppose, I always think back to a day in November long ago, when my dad and I were able to make a bit of hunter's magic between us.

In 1982, on the opening day of deer season while we were sitting by a tree overlooking a clear cut valley, my dad saw movement about 100 yards away down the hill by a small creek that ran thru the valley. I was ten years old, almost, and had graduated from just being a participant at deer camp to carrying a single shot, breech load .410 shotgun which I had been given a box of slugs, my own hunting vest and the works that year. As I scanned the valley looking for movement with my binoculars my dad tapped me on the shoulder, put a finger to his lips to indicate "quiet" and pointed down the hill. I followed his eyes and saw a very healthy 7-point buck drinking out of the creek. I watched my dad bring his rifle up to his shoulder very slowly and take in a long breath, then watched him, the whole time I'm watching my dad, not the deer, I remember that distinctly. I didn't take my eyes off him until I heard the crack of the first shot, very loud in the quiet morning. Dad took aim with his .308 and fired one shot, but hit the deer further back than he had aimed. He told me later he had put the crooshairs right behind the shoulder but it looked like the deer turned at the last second, else it would have all been over right there. We were sitting on a trail going up a very steep hill and the deer turned and ran directly toward us instead of away from us. Dad had four shots left and shot at the deer four more times as it ran toward us, zigging and zagging all over the place. Dad's rifle clicked on the last shot and about that time the deer, finally seeing us, stopped dead in its tracks about 15 yards away. I had already brought my shotgun to my shoulder without thinking, and I vaguely remember my dad saying "I'm empty!" as I cocked the hammer back like he'd trained me to, and put the front bead sight right on the deer's head. I pulled the trigger and the deer dropped before I realized what had happened. I'd put the slug right thru the deer's left ear and the results were immediate. The deer was dead by the time we walked up to it. My dad had hit it in the stomach and I had finished it off. I had never seen my dad express so much emotion. We ended up getting our picture in the very small local newspaper because it was the opening day of hunting season, always a special event where I grew up. The picture is of my dad and I holding up the deer by the antlers, he's using his left hand, me using my right hand. Both of us with huge smiles on our faces. In his right hand is that Remington 742 Woodsmaster .308 carbine....the same one that sits silent in my gun closet now. In my left hand in that old picture is the Springfield/Savage single shot .410 shotgun that I used to take down the 7-point buck my dad and I teamed up on. My dad has that picture framed and hung up beside the deer antlers from that 7-point buck on the wall next to his side of the bed. It's been hanging there for as long as I can remember and he'll tell the story to anyone who wants to hear it, and I still like to listen to him tell it, especially around deer season. I keep both weapons close to one another in my gun closet so when I see them, I can always look back on the best memory I ever had with my dad. It was a good day which seems so long ago but some days, like today, it seems like it was yesterday.
Awesome memory to cherish 😍😍😍
 

Sld1959

Professional
I sit here reading. Choked up thinking about a million different memories of my dad. Half of me sad and missing him, half so very happy at being so lucky to have had him.

Thank you gentlemen for bringing them all up.

It's going to be one hell of a hunting season...
 

C. Sumpin

Custom
Good quality remembrances. Hunting & 2A learning from our fathers is great.

Mine was a bit different. My Dad never hunted or had any interest in nature. Couple games of checkers was about it. Man of few words; I've spent all day with him in a pickup truck as a boy and never a word spoken between us.

Still, as I look back from the vantage point of having learned a thing or two myself, I see the lessons and wisdom of minding my own business, not wasting breath ("trying to persuade a gatepost") he would say, not telling everything I know, frugal in lifestyle, private in politics (break that one every day!) and balancing life with work/leisure. He did not say much, had no need for frivolous conversation/gossip, but when appropriate would assert himself as only he could, and was observant/rarely fooled. He was unable to speak the word Love nor express it except in the most subtle ways, yet (now) I know he did and I'm grateful he was my Dad and taught me (without words) rather by example, so much. To think and do for oneself, stand against Hell and everyone else if required/needed. In stature he was not big, but in life and example for integrity and correct values he was; and with the passing of time that has brought clarity and wisdom to his son, he looms ever larger.
 

Bassbob

Ronin
I just left my parent’s house. Pops wasn’t having a great day. Between the almost completely blocked carotid arteries and his blood sugar he gets dizzy a lot and has these mini seizures where his arms go straight out and he just shakes.
Growing up we had dogs. Always bird dogs. Dad was never a cat person although we had one or two over the years. I on the other hand am also a cat person. And since I was 16 and on my own I’ve always had them. Well these days my old man is devoting a lot of his time and compassion to a cat who wanders into their back yard every day and lounges on the deck. He’s feeding it now. The lawn guy scared it off with a blower a few days ago and he hadn’t seen it again and he was very sad. Then it showed up tonight. I haven’t seen him that happy in a while.
 

Sld1959

Professional
My dad used a Little Ben wind up alarm clock for hunting trips, about for as long as I remember. Its hard to estimate how many mornings I woke to it's chimes. He always carried it on trips wrapped in red flannel. A couple months ago, maybe springtime, mom started asking if I knew where it was. It always stayed on his dresser. Well last time I saw it was last Thanksgiving on our final trip. I suspected he may have left it in the hotel we stayed the last night in. So I determined to go there and ask.

Last weekend, getting ready for archery season I was going thru my hunting gear tote. There tucked in a corner I saw red flannel. I guess dad knew that was his last trip, and passed it on. I stayed out in the garage for a while...
 
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