I have been told real friendships last a lifetime. I believe that, and my friendship with Raymond “Pap” Brown, of Dry Fork will prove that to be true.
Pap and myself go back longer than most people are alive. I just returned from Kansas, where I bagged my first big gobbler of the season. I was going to write about that trip until I got a picture from Pap’s daughter, Connie Sturgill, of Pap and his son Dale. They had doubled up on opening day morning, bringing down two long beards. That makes a much better story; I can do mine later.
The picture with this Struttin’ Time, is worth a thousand words. Pap now needs to wear an eyepatch. It is hard enough at our age to see anything from two eyes, let alone one.
Pap has been in failing health for the last 10 years, but the trooper he is has kept him in the woods, and still hunting. His two granddaughters give him all the hope he needs to keep going. His son, Dale, in my world is a top shelf man, helping his dad in and out of the mountains so that Pap can still enjoy life. Pap loves his family, his friends, and kids.
Even with one eye, Pap is a dead shot and although I wasn’t there, I know the gobbler never had a chance. Pap, tip of my hat to you for a job well done, and my gift to you is that you can still hunt for many years.
Thank you, Connie, for the picture, and thanks Dale for being there for Pap, and I know you will be there whenever he needs you. What this world needs is more friendships like Pap Brown, and myself in my opinion, and since I am the one that is doing this story mine is the only opinion that counts.
Till next week, take a youth hunting, be careful, and happy hunting.