The coolest thing happened to me this past week in Letcher County.
I had been doing what I normally do this time of year, scouting for turkeys on some of my finest friends’ property. I am always thrilled when I come from the woods and know my friend has me a place to warm and a great cup of coffee. Friends like that are priceless.
But this story is about after the coffee and the scouting, and I think it will thrill your heart. It did mine.
I stopped to gas my truck up, and I noticed a child in the truck beside me was shouting something to someone. I noticed it was a man dressed in camo, and at a second glance saw the child was also.
Next thing I knew their truck door flew open, and there, right in front of me, stood a pint-sized hunter almost crying, from joy. The man came around the truck, looked at me, and said, “Yep, Hunter, that is Steve Brewer.”
The small guy put out his hand and said, ”My name is Hunter, and I think you are the greatest hunter in the world.”
I had to grin and take a minute to pause about what he just said. His dad, whose name was Trevor, sorry I didn’t get any last names, said, “Mr. Brewer, Hunter makes me read every Struttin’ Time you write to him. He thinks you are the ‘GREATEST’”.
I knew I should be getting on my way, but I also knew I couldn’t without first sitting down with Hunter and telling him what being the “Greatest” really means.
Hunter said, “I am five years old”, as we sit down on my tailgate after we both pulled away from the pumps. Trevor had taken Hunter scouting, and had found the place to hunt on opening day.
I told Hunter, that although he thought I might be the greatest hunter, and that I was thrilled he thought that, I was probably not the best. I just worked harder at it than most.
I told him, “Hunter, if you always give anything you do your best shot, work hard at it, and put in the shoe leather,” ( he seemed stumped at that expression), that some day, when he grew up, some young child would come along, and think he was the “Greatest” also.
I tried to explain you try and do the right things in life, don’t smoke, don’t do drugs, don’t text and drive, stay away from peer pressure, and get a good education, and you, Hunter, will be just fine. The minutes quickly passed by, and we had sat for over an hour.
Hunter asked me if I would do him a favor and sign his hunting cap. I was shocked when his dad asked me to do the same thing to his cap.
I will never forget that chat, and I hope to never forget those two, who I hope have learned that I am real. To Hunter, I am the “GREATEST,” but to you guys, I will always just be me, and that is fine.