MONETTA — On Saturday, participants from the Augusta Warrior Project as well as the Veterans Administration from Fort Gordon, who, through the Augusta Warrior project and the National Wildlife Turkey Federation's Wheelin' Sportsmen Hope For The Warriors and Wounded Veteran Projects, participated in a skeet shoot and dove hunt on Saturday on Jack and Sarah Schwarz's property.
It's an event for us to have fun, said Crystal Davis, one of 10 participants.
“We received an email to come out to the event; both myself and my husband were wounded in Iraq,” said Davis. “It's a great experience to be able to come out and hunt with fellow veterans. I got one, target and a tip out one of 12 targets. I think the birds are safe from me.”
David Bradbury works with the veterans administration and has the opportunity to work with veterans everyday.
“The skeet shoot and dove hunt is an opportunity to come out and try some skills you haven't been able to in a long time,” said Bradbury. “This will be my first time dove hunting. I've done a lot of skeet shooting along the way. If you don't use it, you lose it. As long as they have rounds, and I have the shoulder to hold up, I'll continue shooting. That's the only way you get better.”
The Augusta Warrior Project and the NWTF are becoming more involved with the community, and that's allowing veterans to go out and become more active, said Bradbury.
“These programs are supported by the community, and that makes a big difference,” said Bradbury.
Amos Casillas, Davis' husband, didn't have much luck his first go around skeet shooting but did manage to hit several targets the second time and saw the event as a way to spend some time with fellow soldiers.
“We might get some birds later on,” said Casillas. “We're looking forward to it. We're pretty excited about it. We just like being around friends.”
The day included a lunch, and the group went dove hunting later in the afternoon as temperatures dropped.
Bradbury used a borrowed Remington 1100 during the skeet shooting phase of the event.
“It's probably one of the more popular skeet shooting guns,” said Bradbury. “I took a 90-pound hog with it last year at SRS, so I've been eating off of that for a while.”