By Nathan Pfau, Army Flier Staff WriterSeptember 26, 2013
FORT RUCKER, Ala. (Sept. 26, 2013) -- There is a whole host of activities that Soldiers and family members can enjoy in the outdoors of Fort Rucker, but the installation is doing its part to make sure that wounded warriors aren't left out when it comes to outdoor recreation.
The 2013 Wounded Warrior Fall Hunt will be Oct. 5-12, and will give wounded warriors, as well as Soldiers and civilians, the opportunity to hunt hogs and coyotes to win prizes that will help out a worthy cause, said John Clancy, outdoor recreation manager.
"This is an opportunity for [Fort Rucker] to provide an activity for wounded warriors," said Clancy. "It's a chance to get the wounded warriors on the installation out for a hunt and camaraderie, but also to showcase to them the type of handicap-accessible equipment available for them to use at any time and for no cost."
The seven-day hunt will take place throughout the various hunting areas on Fort Rucker, and is open to the public.
There is no registration fee for wounded warriors, but for the general public registration is $25, which includes a door prize ticket and lunch.
Those that wish to participate in the hunt must be at least 16 years of age with a hunter's education card, Alabama state hunting license, Fort Rucker post hunting permit and have their weapons registered with the Provost Marshal Office.
All of the proceeds from the Wounded Warrior Hunt will go directly back into outdoor recreation to fund programs or equipment for wounded warriors, said Clancy.
There will be prizes given to the hunter with the most points for hogs and for coyotes -- three points per hogs and 15 points per coyote. There will also be door prizes given away to the person holding the winning ticket on the final day of the hunt.
People don't have to participate in the hunt to be eligible for door prizes, said Clancy, and they can purchase tickets for $5 at the outdoor recreation service center at Lake Tholocco Bldg. 24235, or at Leisure Travel Services in Bldg. 5700.
Prizes will range from hunting equipment, fishing equipment, camping equipment, etc. and participants don't need to be present to win.
"In 2011, the hunt raised $40,890, and in 2012, the hunt raised $35,322, which went directly into buying new equipment for the wounded warriors," said Clancy, adding that all the funds raised during the event benefit Fort Rucker directly.
With the funds raised in 2011, Fort Rucker purchased two handicap-accessible elevated tree stands and a track chair and, with the funds raised in 2012, a customized handicap accessible boat, boat dock, accessories for the track chair and some support equipment for the upcoming hunts were purchased, said Clancy.
"A lot of wounded warriors can be reclusive, and I feel the way to get wounded warriors outdoors is to reach out to the Family," said Mark Yoakum, ODR facilities manager. "Their families also have to live with it every day and they're also paying a high price -- the family feels it just as much."
Yoakum added that the focus of the hunt is to expand the wounded warrior programs on Fort Rucker to accommodate not only wounded warriors that hunt, but all wounded warriors.
"That's why we want an opportunity to be able to do things for wounded warriors," he continued. "We want to showcase what we've got out here at the lake. We don't really have a lot of programs [on Fort Rucker] for wounded warriors, but we're trying to change that. We're just trying to raise awareness for wounded warriors by expanding on the hunt and doing more things for them."
For more information or to register, call 255-4305.