By SHERRY VAN ARSDALL
THE GOSHEN NEWS
Henri Richards Sr., shot his first seven-point buck on the first shot two weeks ago near Auburn, Ind., after waiting a half-hour in a heated deer blind.
The 74-year-old couldn’t contain his excitement.
“It went down on the first shot. Everybody was jumping up and down and screaming,” Richards said. “I’ve had bypass heart surgery and a pacemaker put in my heart. I thought it was going to go off, I was so excited.”
He was hunting with his son, Henri Richards, Jr., and a guide from the group, Hunters Helping Hunters, based in Auburn.
Their mission is to improve the quality of life for physically challenged and or seriously ill hunters like himself, Richards said.
“I still haven’t come back to the ground after getting my first buck,” he added, laughing.
A friend told him about the group a few years ago, so Richards found their website online and filled out an application to go hunting and after the third time hunting with Hunters Helping Hunters, it proved to be successful for him.
“They are processing my deer in Auburn and will bring it to me packaged and frozen. I love venison,” he said. “They are even mounting my deer for me since I was their oldest applicant who shot a buck on the first try.”
He plans to hang the deer mount on the wall in his living room in a prominent place.
“It’s a wonderful situation. It’s unbelievable,” Richards said. “It was a good day for me, but not for the deer.”
He shared the contents of his freezer with a local family so he could make room for the venison.
“I’ll try about anything — even bear meat—which someone gave me some. It’s pretty good. I love to bake and cook. All my neighbors are getting fat,” he said, chuckling. “I sit in my little apartment and enjoy what time the Good Lord has left for me. I enjoy life with my kitty, Katie.”