Last Saturday, on the hottest day on record, I helped as a range safety officer for a Southeast Regional youth shoot at our range in Wakefield. The meet was for young men and women (young teens) to come together for a fun day of shooting their clubs .22 caliber rifles and pistols at paper and steel targets. It was an all day event with dozens of young teens attending from several 4H and other organization clubs. I was one of 4 range safety officers there to make sure no one was injured. Most of the participants were very familiar with gun safety, so I only had to intervene a few times, mostly with parents. The teens had a great time shooting at first paper targets and then later at steel silhouettes of pigs and chickens.
From what I could observe, most of the teens were very good shots and took the event very seriously. There were a number of beautiful rifles being used and a few revolvers. It turned out that the biggest safety concern was the heat and humidity. I think the high temperature was 105 with the ever present southern humidity. Several teens had to be taken off-line to be treated for the onset of heat related problems. I managed to stay in the shade most of the time but I still drank a lot of water to stay hydrated.
Everyone had a great time and I was delighted to see so many teens and their families participating in a great sport. The love of firearms by Americans has not diminished over the years, despite attempts by some misguided groups to take away our second amendment right. I only wish that I had been introduced to shooting as a child. My dad loved hunting but I never went on a hunting trip with him. I actually hate hunting today, but my love of guns has only grown over the years. I have included a link to a short video I took of the event. That is all.