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2008 Life Hunt Yields Big Bucks, Lasting Memories

Justin BlackmanBy Buckmasters Online

-- A total of eight deer were harvested during the second day of the 2008 Buckmasters Classic Life Hunt at Sedgefields Plantation in Dallas County, Ala.

Photo: Justin Blackman of Dunn, N.C., is all smiles after he harvested his first buck during the 2008 Buckmasters Classic Life Hunt at Sedgefields Plantation in Dallas County, Ala. Jackie Bushman, Buckmasters founder, helps Blackman hold the 8-point buck, which was harvested during a morning hunt on a greenfield.

Justin Blackman of Dunn, N.C., and U.S. Army Sgt. FC Michael Snisky of Prattville, Ala., each harvested 8-point bucks during the morning hunt. An additional four bucks and two does were harvested during the evening hunt.

Blackman, an 11-year-old who plays baseball and enjoys swimming, took his buck with a 100-yard shot. The young hunter’s dad was sitting in a ground blind, while his son sat in a ladderstand with a Sedgefields Plantation guide.

“A few moments passed after Justin took the shot, and then all I could see was my son’s big grin while he looked at me through the ladderstand’s floor,” said Vernon Blackman. “The look on that boy’s face was just amazing.”

U.S. Army Sgt. FC Michael SniskyPhoto: U.S. Army Sgt. FC Michael Snisky, left, took his first buck during the 2008 Buckmasters Classic Life Hunt at Sedgefields Plantation in Dallas County, Ala. Snisky is the first soldier to harvest a deer in Takin’ Heroes Hunting. The program was created in conjunction with the U.S. Army and gives two wounded soldiers the chance to participate in the annual Life Hunt.

Justin was diagnosed with an inoperable tumor in his neck located close to his spine. The condition caused Justin to lose the function of his left arm. Now, Justin’s health is back to 100 percent after a full year of medical treatment.

“My son’s wish was to go hunting with Jackie Bushman,” Vernon said. “This hunt really put the icing on the cake after his recovery.”

Country music star Mark Chesnutt performed for the hunters after dinner. He harvested an 11-point buck during the evening hunt.

2008 Buckmasters Classic Life Hunt participants include:
Kevin Ross Bair, Pasco, Wash.
Justin Blackman, Dunn, N.C.
Joe Dunning, Monroeville, Ala.
Abby Kempfer, Hoyleton, Ill.
Roger Lloyd, Independence, Ore.
Brian McSorley, Tuscaloosa, Ala.
Richard Millender Jr., Bristol, Fla.
Ronnie Redding, Tuscaloosa, Ala.
Teddy Webb, Kissimmee, Fla.
U.S. Army SPC Alan Grenier, Fort Benning, Ga.
U.S. Army Sgt. FC Michael Snisky, Prattville, Ala.

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