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Boy dies returning from his dying wish, a bear hunt in British Columbia.

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by DanOregon, Jun 12, 2007.

  1. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    Thoughts and prayers to the family. I'm happy that he got his wish, but I can't stop wondering what the bear's last wish was. Am I out of line?

    From the Prince George (BC) Citizen:
    Boy dies while returning from Prince George bear hunt

    Citizen staff

    Jonathan Kerr never got to sleep on his bear skin rug.

    The 10-year-old boy died Thursday while flying back to his home in Kennesaw, Ga., less than two days after his father Bruce shot the bear while on a hunting trip in Prince George. The plane was 40 minutes away from Atlanta when the terminally-ill Jonathan succumbed to liver cancer, a disease he had battled for three years.
    It was Jonathan's dying wish to hunt bear in British Columbia. The trip was made possible by Prince George outfitters Scott and Lynn Pichette and Thom Halligan of Safari Club International (SCI), who made the necessary arrangements through the SCI Safari Wish Program. Jonathan and his father Bruce spent five days hunting on or near the Pichette's guiding territory east of Prince George, which extends to the Bowron Lakes.
    "The little boy was sick, and there was no way he was going to beat this cancer thing, no way," said Halligan, from his home in Gig Harbor, Wash. "I saw the progression (of the disease) in the 10 days he was with me and he was getting worse."
    During the seven-day hunt, Jonathan saw plenty of bear and did get one shot off. But when it became apparent he was too weak to hold a gun, let alone shoot it, Halligan purchased a license and hunting tag for Bruce Kerr, who shot and killed a bear last Tuesday, the day before they made the 12-hour drive back to Washington State. The bear was butchered in Prince George, the meat was frozen, and Halligan made the arrangements to have the hide prepared and made into a rug, which will be sent to the Kerr family in Kennesaw as soon as it's ready.
    "That bear rug's going to be around for a long time, and that was probably the finest time together Jonathan and his father ever spent, because it was totally them, doing something they wanted to do, hunt, and that's something that really memorable to Bruce," said Halligan.
    Jonathan died Thursday, and his funeral was on Sunday. At the time his travel arrangements were made, the plan was to fly from Seattle to Charleston, West Virginia, where Jonathan's mother Sheila was visiting family members. The Kerrs were then going to drive back to Kennesaw, 30 kilometres north of Atlanta.
    "The one I feel sorry for is Sheila -- she said goodbye to her son, to have a good time, and she didn't realize that she was really saying goodbye to him," said Halligan.
    "I'll remember Jonathan for his courage and determination and his will to live and I think this trip gave him and his family five months more of life. When he found out he was going bear hunting in B.C. he told everybody in the state of Georgia who was willing to listen. Maybe we did buy him and family some time."
    Halligan and the Pichettes, who are also SCI members, want to provide a hunting trip every year for somebody they meet through the SCI Safari Wish Program. Halligan said it will now be called the Jonathan Kerr Memorial Safari Wish Program.
    He'll arrange to send to the Pichettes a .306 calibre rifle designed with smaller kids in mind, to be left for future Safari Wish Program hunters who come to Prince George. The gun will have a muzzle break and be equipped with low-recoil ammunition to help lessen the impact of firing a shot.
    The Delta Airlines flight crew who attended to Jonathan at the time of his death planned to attend his funeral in Kennesaw and promised Halligan they would try to arrange for free flights for the children and their families. Halligan also met a conservation officer in Prince George who is seeking permission from his office to have the necessary licenses and tags donated. Halligan would like SCI to make the trip happen three or four times a year.
    "This is the venue I've chosen to pursue, and I'm not dealing with athletes, I'm dealing with terminally-ill or critically-ill children and I'm going to lose some of them, so this has to keep going," said Halligan.
    "I've learned so much from this trip because of Jonathan, and I can make it easier for those who follow me (organizing similar trips) so they don't have to reinvent the wheel to get this done. It's a sad thing, but good things will come of it."
  2. rgd

    rgd Guest

    A little. Not every thread on this board needs a sarcastic comment.
  3. Is that why you deleted your post last night on the stalker thread?
  4. rgd

    rgd Guest

    No. I deleted it because I misspelled a word and someone else made the same joke, so I decided to eliminate the repetition. You're very observant. Kudos.
  5. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    I'm not being sarcastic. That's the thing.
  6. rgd

    rgd Guest

    You like Bowling for Columbine? (I did.)
  7. Double J

    Double J Active Member

    Some people hunt and/or fish. Deal with it. Sheesh.
  8. I don't feel remotely qualified to have an opinion on this.
    Yes, you may strike up the band now.
  9. baskethead

    baskethead Member

    Some people kill other people, too. Some people drink and drive. Some people watch child porn. Do we just deal with that, too? Some people put hunting and fishing in those categories of needless violence toward innocent people (or animals). Why is that a problem and why should they not be able to express that? I feel terrible for the kid, that's a horrible thing to happen to anyone, much less a 10-year-old. But I feel equally bad for a bear who has to die for no reason. And I don't see anything wrong with that.
  10. Double J

    Double J Active Member

    Gee, I don't know. Maybe because hunting certain animals and fishing are generally not against the law?

    They're also very common outdoor activities in rural society. You don't like them? Fine, whatever. You're entitled to your opinion. You're not entitled to make judgments about lawful activities and the people who engage in them.
  11. Double Down

    Double Down Well-Known Member

    I think, if I were his editor, I might have asked Ted Clarke to think long and hard about his lead. I guess it's ok, but I think you can do a lot better than that.
  12. Rosie

    Rosie Active Member

    K, I'm breaking my self-imposed rule on posting on hot-button topic threads.

    I live in the woods. Hunting is as much a part of our way of life as city people commuting.

    Let me tell you about living with bears in your back yard, as I do. Even if you keep your garbage in the garage, forget to shut that side door one time and you can have a bear cause major destruction. Then she will never leave. Several years ago, a neighbor had her toddler son playing in a fenced-in area in her back yard and a bear climbed INTO the enclosure. Thankfully, she was able to grab her son out of there before the bear attacked her son, but the bear had to be disposed of by the DNR (yes, shot and killed.) Two of my sister-in-laws hit bears, totaling their vehicles. (The SILs' vehicles, the bears were on foot.) My SILs were ok, but one still has physical problems from her accident.

    How about deer? You think they're just cute little bambis frollicking in the forest? Sorry to burst your bubble, but they are nothing but big rats on hooves. Two years ago I hit a deer (there was no way to safely avoid the accident -- safe for the six people in the vehicle that is), causing $3,000 in damage to my vehicle. You all are helping pay for our deer wrecks with your insurance premiums. We won't talk about the damage they cause to gardens and flower beds, but I can take a walk out in my back woods and show you all sorts of damage to trees and underbrush deer cause -- if you can avoid stepping in the hundreds of piles of deer dung. The deer population is a huge overpopulation where I live right now, which means if there isn't a good deer harvest in the fall (yes, hunters killing deer), those 'darling bambis' are going to slowly starve to death over the winter. That is a fact and it's not a pretty picture. Right now there are more dead deer along roadways than there should be for this time of year.

    The majority of hunters are responsible people who use what they shoot. My freezer is full of venison, and we donate the hides to a charity organization. I would hardly call feeding my family "needless violence" and if you think that's bad, then you'd better not ever eat a hamburger again.

    If someone doesn't want to 'like' hunting, I'm okay with that. Everyone has their opinions, their beliefs and that's how it should be. But hunting is NOT the same as murdering another human being and to equate it as such is just wrong.
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