A group of hunters from Southwest Louisiana recently traveled to southeast Oklahoma to not only enjoy the outdoors, but to come back with a trophy deer. They're part of "Hunting with Heroes," an organization that provides outdoor leisure and sporting activities for veterans injured in wartime.
"Our goal was just to have a fun weekend where they meet new people and make new friends and shoot a deer of a lifetime," said Justin Landry, one of the organizers of the trip. "Maybe do something that gets them away from their normal everyday life."
Thanks to sponsors like Moody Price, Imperial Health, Cardiovascular Specialties, Trinity Baptist Church and BBP Sales, the vets got the chance to go on a once in a lifetime hunt. Jeff Smith retired from the Army after almost 24 years of service.
"Guys are coming back with physical and mental injuries," said Smith. "Something like this, it can help all aspects. I know after I got my kill, a great 154-inch whitetail, I didn't feel any pain. It was a good day."
"I do so much appreciate when people take the time to go above and beyond," said James Johnson, a retired National Guard Staff Sergeant wounded in Baghdad. "These guys did a ton of work in the background and put a trip of a lifetime together for some guys they didn't even know. It says a lot about where their heart is and their true appreciation for veterans in this country."
Organizers are planning another such trip for wounded veterans next year.
If you'd like more information on "Hunting With Heroes," go to www.antlerstrophywhitetails.com