WeHuntSC.com Blog


Blog Entries from the WeHuntSC.com blogging crew

A Hunt for Strength

The following is a guest blog by Laura Byrd McKenzie

It was the best adventure ever! We waited anxiously- shaking from nervousness, yet stiff with excitement! We had put so much of ourselves into thishunt? planning, preparing, saving and sacrificing. Finally we could see him coming out.  His head was down. He didn?t even notice we were there. At just the right time we made our move!  And, in an instant, Eddie-Ramzie was part of our family! A child from the other side of the ?big pond? (Atlantic Ocean) was ours forever and there was no looking back.

The feeling we had that day at the airport when we first held the 2-year-old little one who became our ?Eddie-Ramzie McKenzie (ER)? was a first that can never be matched.  Much like the day he had his first kill, it was a day we will always hold ?deer!?

Eddie-Ramzie started hunting with his dad, Eddie, in the Fall of 2010. Considering that most of ER?s summer was spent swimming and playing video games, he was quite bored on the first few hunts. I imagine the act of sitting in the tree stand might have seemed like a trophy in itself considering the effort put forth just to get there.  Eddie-Ramzie triumphs daily through a forest of adversities in his quest to walk and otherwise actively enjoy life like any other young boy near rural McBee, South Carolina. Though he has to be careful as his bones break easily, he?s known for also breaking medical milestones and defeating the odds.

After several hunts and countless arguments, his dad hammered into Eddie-Ramzie?s hard head that eventually he would learn to love hunting.  His dad didn?t understand why hunting should be so difficult to tolerate for Eddie-Ramzie. After all, he had endured over two years in the lonely wilderness of an orphanage near Russia?s Black Sea. He had bravely survived a hunt in the US and Canada for skilled doctors who continue to perform his repeated bone surgeries. He firmly and patiently grasps the cold metal of a walker and wheelchair almost every day.  He masters each school day by overcoming a mischievous ?big mouth? to make straight ?A?s?. 

If he could tolerate all of the above, he was darn well going to calm down, keep his mouth shut, and overcome a little boredom to embrace the metal of a rifle and eventually break the stride of a deer?  hopefully without breaking his own shoulder.

Eddie-Ramzie was already aggravated from the last hunt when his daddy set up his AR-15, which was borrowed from longtime friend Patrick Griggs. ?The Big-One? had strutted from the thicket and posed for a shot, only to leap away in laughter as a loud CLICK yielded nothing. ER protested as he caught a familiar piggy-back ride on his dad in order to hike back to their hunting golf car, ?It was YOUR fault, Daddy! You didn?t set up the gun right. It was your fault I didn?t kill that buck!?

Over the next several hunts the quiet sign language between the two guys became heated as ER insisted that his dad was not using the new deer caller correctly. ER insisted that according to the directions he read on the package, ?You don?t know what you?re doing, Daddy!?

One Saturday morning, October 30, Dad decided to let his son sleep late after one of ER?s many rough nights of bone pain. Eddie-Ramzie insists that it had more to do with Dad?s whining for more sleep than with anyone?s pain. Regardless of who won that edition of ?The Biggest Whiner,? the two men pulled their camo clothing from the proven McKenzie ScentFanDuffle bag.  They had argued the night before and ER won as they settled on using dog fennel for the cover scent in the bag?s cartridge/fan system.

They set out on the mid-morning hunt. As ER had killed enough time in that deer stand while reading a tree?s-worth of books, he decided to bring along a thicker book.  After reading quite a while, another grey argument began to stir in those colorful woods. ERs hands and fingers gestured sharply that his dad was once again using the deer caller incorrectly. Fed up with his son?s 10 year-old ?know-it-all? attitude, Dad gave the call to the Smarty Pants beside him, and motioned as if to say ?just do it yourself.?  Eddie-Ramzie snatched up the device and proceeded to use it according to the words so clearly printed on the package. He settled back into the comfort of reading. Within about two minutes, a handsome doe crept from the briars.

ER lifted his trembling arms to aim. He was sure the gun had been secretly snacking on his cousin Jeanie?s famous homemade pastries because it suddenly weighed a ton.  Time slithered like the snails on the front porch as he remembered how his older sister, Bobbi, boasted that she had killed her first doves at age 7 which was a much younger age than he had. His sister Jessi?s voice screeched in his mind as he recalled her laughing that she looks much better in camouflage that he ever dreamed of looking. He hunted for strength in his hands as his stomach felt as jiggly as the strawberry jello dessert his mom, Laura, sneaks before diner.

If he could make this shot, then finally he could brag about his first deer and how much smarter he is than his Daddy. After all, he had chosen to read and follow directions, unlike Big Eddie! And most important of all, he was reading his Bible when God brought out the deer just for him!  His strong little fingers squeezed the cold trigger as his trophy submitted herself by expiring at his feet on the ground under the tall pines that his Papa Byrd had raised from saplings.

Finally, it had happened! And, all was right with the world! Faster than a pine cone can bounce from a squirrel?s tail, a text was sent to announce his kill. Vehicles could be heard skidding over the sandy cordoury bumps of Jesse Byrd Road.  Truck doors slammed, digital cameras flashed and friendly waves abounded as a large crowd of at least 3 people gathered to greet him: nevermind the coincidence that the crowd was in fact the three females in his family who compete to boss his every move.

His mind echoed like the hills and hollow near the creek that trickles beyond the barn we call the old ?tenant house!?  Yep, my Mema Byrd will surely hurry to get dressed so as not to be late for tonight?s green-carpet gathering at the local Hardee?s Restaurant. The top story on her agenda will be to proudly announce to her friends that her grandson, Eddie-Ramzie, has once again accomplished his goal and brought home adventure, strength and love.

WeHuntSC.com - Eddie Ramzie with his first deer

WeHuntSC.com - Eddie Ramzie McKenzie with his dad Eddie McKenzie

Adventure, strength, and love can be found through a multitude of experiences and within countless lands and seas throughout the world. However, no adventure is quite like the outdoor life this skinny young boy experiences in the Sand Hills of Middendorf Community, USA.  No strength is quite like that which comes as a result of brokenness. And no love is quite like the love Eddie-Ramzie McKenzie feels for his daddy, his God, and newest of all, deer hunting!

Laura Byrd McKenzie

Comments are closed.
Showing 0 Comment

South Carolina Hog Problems - Contact Us

WeHuntSC.com Disabled Veteran Hunt