A Muskegon, Michigan man is proving that a disabled hunter can still enjoy the thrill of the outdoors.
Sometimes, hunters can take things for granted. The chance to drive to a hunting spot, hike to the perfect area, and sit for hours waiting for the opportunity for a shot to present itself are little pieces of what make hunting so great.
Unfortunately, not everyone gets to experience those pieces, but that’s no longer the case for one Michigan hunter who’s getting a second chance at enjoying life as an outdoorsman, as reported on MLive.com.
Jake Veltman suffered debilitating injuries during a car crash while he drove to his hunting grounds in 2005, and was worried his days of shooting deer would be over.
Fast forward to 2009, when Veltman learned of special disabled veteran hunts, organized by the Ruby Creek Tavern in Branch Township.
Veltman got invited to the hunt, where he discovered the “Sip and Puff” wheelchair apparatus, designed by Be Adaptive, that allows a wheelchair-bound person to operate a gun with their mouth, blowing into a tube when they are ready to fire.
With that, Veltman was able to reimagine what it would be like to hunt, an activity he had come to terms with being nearly impossible in his condition.
Veltman told MLive.com:
“It’s quite a pick-me-up. I feel alive again. Hunting is something I love to do and I never thought I’d do again until they made it possible. I live from year to year, and when I couldn’t hunt a whole bunch of my life was gone. This gives me something to look forward to every year. I just can’t wait.”
He was able to add two more deer to his tally last year, and hopes to bag more as the Michigan rifle hunting season gets underway.
Veltman has said he will donate the Sip and Puff wheelchair to the veteran’s hunt when he’s no longer able to participate.
Featured image via MLive.com