The Mountain Eagle
Whitesburg KY

A family story well worth sharing

Struttin’ Time:

Wherever we are, we find good people. Although I like to think everyone in Letcher County is a fine person, I know they are not. Here in Estill County, I have my doubts that there are many fine people, but I have found a family of them.

They live across the road from me. Let’s take a look at them up close and personal.

Brad Hardy and his wife Jennifer have had to endure the pain of seeing their three-year-old son, Blake Andrew Hardy, lose a leg. But they have never let that stop them from being parents, and expecting that their son will get a good education and do well in life.

And the thing that brings Blake to Struttin’ Time, he is a big time hunter. His dad never forgets to spend time with Blake, hunting in the great outdoors and learning to be a good outdoors man.

Blake, who is 11 years old, is in the sixth grade at Estill County Middle School. He is a straight A student. Blake is also one of the lucky ones that drew an elk tag. Although it was a cow tag, Blake was excited to go hunting. His hunt was for December 10 through the 16th and, as with most of my hunts, went right to the wire.

His last day he bagged a nice cow elk. He and his dad, along with his grandpa, went to Bell County, where his dad had hunted before, being drawn for a cow tag, the year before. They never used an outfitter, and did it the oldfashioned way, they worked for it.

But Blake was just beginning. He had been asked to go on a mule deer hunt in Nebraska with an organization that gets hunts for children with disabilities. There Blake learned to mingle with outfitters and hunters from all over the United States. He came home to Estill County with a 5×4 muley, two ring neck pheasants, and two of their big fox squirrels. A hunt to remember.

Thank you, Brad and Blake, for sharing this story with everyone.

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