Malmaison, MS> This turkey hunting should never be taken lightly. Put me in the woods with 100 guys raised turkey hunting and I would feel safe. Put me in the woods with one person that does not know what he is doing and I am terrified.
I was terribly sick the morning Dad and Paul loaded up to go hunting on Malmaison Management Area and missed the trip.
The call came in from the Grenada Emergency Room a little after noon that my father had been shot. My mother panicked and we were all unbelieving that it could happen.
Paul told me the story later.
They had set up that morning and were successful in getting two gobblers to answer their calls. They worked them for about an hour trying to get them to come in. Finally after they had hung up again, Dad said he was going to move back a little and maybe Paul could get a shot as they moved in. He moved and called again. The turkeys did move in closer and finally a nice gobbler got close enough to shoot. Paul raised his shotgun. BOOM!!! The shot sounded and Paul looked to see if Dad had shot for some reason. He saw him lying on the ground covered in blood. He rushed to his side and all my Dad could say was "Paul, Why did you shoot me?" Paul tried to stop the blood flow and wipe his face, all the while telling him that it wasn't him and not quite understanding what had happened, when a man stepped out of the woods and ran over to help. He and Paul worked on making Dad comfortable while the man babbled how sorry he was, that he thought my Dad was a turkey.
He had been crawling through the woods for an hour sneaking up on them and was so excited that when he finally saw movement, he fired. They got him up, stopped as much blood flow as possible, put his arms over their shoulders and headed for the truck. Luckily they met their hunting party and with their help, quickly got him into the back of the vehicle. The unknown hunter said he would follow them into the Grenada Hospital. We never saw or heard from him again.
Dad had been on one knee and the shot had slammed him from head to toe. He was wearing shooting glasses and that is the only thing that saved his sight. The doctors picked out the lead as much as they could, put a couple of bandaids on him and sent him home. He still has shot in his skull and jaw today and occassionally a piece comes out of his skin. He is a tough old cuss. He is the most careful person I know of in the woods and has taught us from birth how to be safe in the woods. Still he was shot by one over-anxious hunter. Watch closely and be very careful. Moose has posted a very complete Turkey Hunting Code of Ethics that everyone should review before heading to the woods.