Rocke Fournet Thursday, February 19, 2015 0

Thank God for small favors and great doctors.

Mom makes Dad happy!

Mom makes Dad happy!

There’s nothing like facing a life-changing event to properly adjust your priorities. In fact, most everyday crises we face are in reality rather trivial. A serious illness has a way of sorting through all the fluff and getting down to the core.

Once you’ve been there, your thought process changes. and for the good. You’ll never again be caught taking your health for granted. The simple pleasures take on a whole new meaning once you’ve been to the other side.

Daryl Kingery loves his hunting, but settled for an abbreviated season. When all was said and done, he would take what he could get and be thankful for it.

He began experiencing severe vision problems to the point that hunting wasn’t even an option. Even Kingery couldn’t shoot with limited vision in only one eye.

He was diagnosed with a severe hemorrhage causing temporal pressure and prepped for surgery. After suffering through rehab and some real high stress, his vision slowly, but surely, began to clear. Once he was over the hump, his doctors gave him the thumbs up and Daryl was going hunting.

He was hooked up with Jim Boyer and David Duzan for a duck and goose adventure at Klondike. Never did it feel so good to be sitting in a pit blind with friends swapping lies.

After nearly losing his sight, the sunrise was surely a beautiful sight.

It also helped that the birds were cooperative. They provided the best medicine of all.

The hunters put together a mixed bag of quality ducks with three specklebellies for lagniappe.

Troy and man-child Trey with a great Kansas buck!

Troy and man-child Trey with a great Kansas buck!

Kingery got his groove on, folding a majestic speck that made his day. On retrieval, it was discovered that the goose was leg-banded to boot. This particular bird was an incredible eight years old, and originally banded in Nanavut, Canada. This was a special hunt, and it was only fitting that Daryl got the honors of taking a banded bird on a hunt he’ll always be grateful for.

Hunting offers so much more than just pulling the trigger. Troy Tate has taken his fair share of mature whitetail bucks, and now can get that same good feeling without ever drawing blood.

The Tate team consists of his son Trey and the beauty and brains of the operations, wife Jill. On one recent hunt, they were kicked back doing what they love in a roomy box blind in Kansas.

The bucks were chasing, but the old man never flinched. Several shooter bucks cruised through, but Troy remained in the spotter position.

Both Trey and Jill scored great shots on mature Kansas bucks, and Troy was all smiles. This is what hunting is all about.

Spring fishing is right around the corner. But James Hovey just couldn’t wait. He endured the cold on a December Toledo Bend trip, and it was worth the pain.

Fishing a deep drop-off, he scored an eight-pound, nine-ounce hawg that got his fishing future off on the right foot.

Old man winter is hanging in there with a fresh Arctic front pushing through. Get your gear in order; it should be a super spring fishing season!