One of the major humanitarian outreach programs supported by Safari Club International is working with wounded veterans and Purple Heart recipients from all conflicts.
The Georgia and Magnolia (Mississippi) Chapters of SCI, Mississippi Order of the Purple Heart, Bill Whitmire VFW Post 3936, and Cooper Yerger American Legion Post 28 joined forces in Clarksdale, Mississippi, during the weekend of Dec. 2-4, 2016, at the Third Annual Mississippi SCI Wounded Veteran Deer Hunt.
The warriors included hunters from across the state of Mississippi. Wounded Veterans and Purple Heart recipients are veterans who have truly affirmed their willingness to put their lives on the line for the sake of freedom. Veterans from the Korean War, Vietnam War and the Middle East Wars participated in the hunt.
Nine hunting clubs in the Coahoma and Bolivar Counties graciously opened their hunting cabin doors and hearts to serve those who have served and are so bravely and unselfishly serving our country. The clubs included:
- Bland Bayou Hunting Club
- Burke’s Hunting Club
- Coahoma County Conservation League
- David Butler Hunting Club
- Duncan-Williams Hunting Club
- Francis Hunting Club
- Merigold Hunting Club
- Spradling Farms
- Watts Plantation
In spite of inclement weather conditions, the dedicated hunters never surrendered and were provided a bountiful harvest. Harvest results included 11 bucks, 6 does, 4 wild hogs and 6 ducks. The largest buck was a beautiful 9-point taken at Burkes Hunting Club. The fortunate hunter was Joe Turner of Lake Comorant, Mississippi.
Over the course of three days, the veterans enjoyed good food, great music by the Blackwater Trio, outstanding hunting and hospitality at the hunting camps. Prizes and awards were provided by local merchants and individuals.
Many merchants and volunteers made this event possible through the donation of their facilities, materials and their time. These gifts were expressions of their gratitude to the veterans and active military personnel for their service.
Groundwork is already in process to resume the festivities next year. The hunt is always conducted the weekend closest to Dec. 7, Pearl Harbor Day. Plans are already in progress for an even larger and bigger hunt next year.