Head over to the High Caliber Cate site to read about a young man who was criticized for possibly saving the life of a fellow student: http://highcalibercate.wordpress.com/2013/06/04/no-country-for-heroes/. Be sure to follow the blog, like the post, and share with others.
If you have read this blog in the past, please head over to my newest blog by clicking on High Caliber Cate. I am going to put the Heritage Family blog on hold for now. High Caliber Cate will cover a lot of the same topics as HF, but will focus on women and juniors, as well. It will also be tied in with my Rowdy Girls facebook page, which is a group of women whose focus is firearms, self-defense, preparedness, and basically just changing the world for the better. You can find Rowdy Girls here: https://www.facebook.com/RowdyGirlsGroup. Come join us!
We had an awesome day with 19 young ladies and their families this weekend for our National Take Your Daughter To The Range Day. The girls were able to try their hand at pistol shooting, rifle shooting, and archery, and even got a hands-on lesson in wildlife identification from a representative of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.
They enjoyed gun-shaped cookies with pink camo icing from Qtzie Cupcakes, won some cool door prizes, and most importantly, learned the basics of safe gun handling.
Volunteers braved the blazing heat – and being in southeast Texas, it was HOT – but they said it was worth it to see all the smiles on the girls’ faces when they made a good shot. And let me tell you, these girls were good shots! It was amazing to see some of them blow the center out of their targets, and was really encouraging when they started off far from center, but walked it in until they were inside the bullseye – that’s when we knew they had it.
Many thanks to those who helped put on the event, and to Houston-Tactical for sponsoring it, and Lynne of Female and Armed for coming up with the idea and supporting all of us. Next year will be even bigger and better! For more information on NTYDTTRD, CLICK HERE, and see below for pictures.
“Generation HC,” or the “High Caliber Generation” is what I’ve begun calling young people I’ve come into contact with in the world of shooting sports. These “kids” are extremely focused, mature, and disciplined – but they have a lot of fun, as well.
You can read about previous Gen HC members Allie Barrett and Leslie Cernik below, but now it’s time to hear from our first male shooter, Jacob “Jaco” Hetherington, a 14 year-old IDPA and USPSA/Steel Challenge competitor from Prescott, Arizona. And Jacob doesn’t just compete in these challenges, he wins. He has achieved Master class in Stock Service Pistol in IDPA, “A” class in single stack, and Master class in Production in USPSA.
He told me of his love for all types of shooting, and of his family, by saying, “My family is really supportive. I have an older sister, Madeline, 16, and a younger brother, Craig, who is 11. My dad shoots with me sometimes, but it is mostly only me. My mom doesn’t shoot anymore, but when she did she was a good dove hunter.
My sister doesn’t shoot competitively, but loves to shoot, and is really good with bolt-action rifles. She also shot shotgun clays with me when we were younger for two years. My younger brother loves to shoot also, and is a beast with an AR 15! He shoots with me in steel challenge rarely.
My entire family hunts and has been successful. My brother, though, holds the record for longest hunting shot, 346 yard perfect vital shot on his first deer.”
As with many young competitive shooters, Jacob’s entry into the world of shooting began early.
“I shot my first gun when I was two years old. My dad had a 10/22 on a bench rest with a red dot sight and I shot frozen gallon jugs. I was pretty much born into shooting. When I was nine, I started dry-fire practicing with my mom’s Glock 19, and when I was ten and a half, I started shooting competitive pistol. I shot an IDPA match and was hooked.”
Jacob’s location in Prescott is practically ideal for any shooter, as he is within close proximity to some wonderful shooting venues.
“I live 30 minutes from my local shooting range (Whispering Long Tree Range/Prescott Action Shooters) and shoot almost every weekend. They hold a sectional match for USPSA called the “NAZC” (Northern Arizona Classic). I live two hours from PRGC (Phoenix Rod And Gun Club), which is an IDPA range, and they hold a sectional IDPA match and the Arizona State Championships. I also live two hours from Rio Salado Sportsman Club, which is a USPSA club. It is also the local range of Rob Leatham, Nils Jonasson, and Cody McKenna, who are all [Grand Master] shooters and always try to help me out. All in all, I would not want to live anywhere else.”
I asked Jacob the same questions I asked the ladies, and here are his answers:
Q. What three life lessons have you learned from shooting?
A. “I have learned to take extreme amounts of pressure, and make it disappear. I am more mature, because I have more responsibility, and I have high confidence, because you can’t doubt yourself when you shoot.”
Q. How has shooting played a part in how you relate to your peers?
A. “My friends think my shooting [is] awesome. Most of them don’t really know about competitive shooting, but I try to teach them.”
Q. What is your favorite type of shooting competition?
A. “I don’t have a favorite type of shooting, but USPSA and IDPA are the most common types I shoot. All shooting is great, so it is hard to choose one. I also hope to shoot 3-gun someday.”
Q. What is your favorite firearm?
A. “I have shot tons of firearms. I have shot M&P’s, Springfield XD’s, Ruger SR9’s and 1911’s and shot very well with them, but right now my Glock 34 is my favorite. I am happy with it, but I look forward to competing with other guns, too.”
Q. How has your schooling affected your shooting “career,” if at all?
A. “Well, I think shooting has made me a better person, overall. It has helped my attitude toward school. I am a 4.0 student, and it is hard to keep [that level] when I leave for major matches. Homework holds back my practice, but I have to do it.”
Q. What is it like to compete against people older than yourself?
A. “Well, when I first started out, I thought that I was at a super disadvantage, but I now realize that it was just an excuse. I have won many matches against adults. I only have two years of USPSA experience, so I don’t have as much experience and confidence as older shooters. I enjoy learning from better shooters, and take what I learn from everybody and combine it with what already works for me.
I also like it when I meet a person that thinks that I am not a good shooter because of my age, and I blow their mind, and I get instant respect.”
Q. What would you like to tell new shooters – young people who are just getting interested in shooting?
A. “I would tell them that if you want to be good, you need to dry fire; and that reading books on competitive shooting is a good idea. Also, that you are going to hit bumps in the road, but if you are determined you will bounce back up.
As Rob Leatham said to me “Shooting is simple, aim shoot aim shoot move aim shoot,” and I would add that shooting is 95% mental, in my opinion. Also, major matches really help you improve fast.”
Q. How do you see yourself involved in shooting 20 years from now?
A. “I see myself as a great shooter that is really trying to help others win matches. I would like to be more of a contributor to the sport of shooting, than just a competitor. I hope I have a good reputation as a good shooter, and [that I’m] very helpful to my sponsors.”
As for his future career plans, Jacob said he hopes to get into a military college, or to get a scholarship to another college/university; but that if those plans do not work out, he will enlist in the military and then use the GI bill to get his college degree. He plans to major in law enforcement and become a Police Officer, then a SWAT officer.
“That is my plan, but it is always changing; and if the military and law enforcement aren’t for me, then I want to go into the hunting guide business.”
From the sound of it, Jacob should have no problem achieving whatever goal he sets his sights on.
You can read about our previous Gen HC’s by clicking on: “Allie Cat” Barrett, or Leslie Cernik, aka Western Rose. I know you will enjoy meeting all of our High Caliber Generation members, and we wish Jacob all the best in his future endeavors!
Everyone needs to head over to From the Draw and read Emily’s story about how her former domain name (Scent Free Lip Gloss) was taken from her unexpectedly – and how you might be able to avoid the same thing happening to you. Emily has an awesome site, full of hunting and fishing stories, humor, and even art! I know she will appreciate the visit, and you will enjoy the time you spend with her.
According to Military.com, “More than 1.7 million children under the age of 18 have at least one parent serving in the armed forces. And it is estimated that more than 900,000 children have had one or both parents deployed multiple times.”
The month of April has been designated as Month of the Military Child in an effort to reach out to these young people and let them know Americans support them and their families. And with the slogan of “Kids Serve Too!” the National Military Family Association has designed a summer camp just for these young heroes.
Operation Purple camps (the color was chosen as a conglomeration of all the basic military colors and represents all branches) “…are open to children and families of active duty, National Guard or Reserve service members from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, or the Commissioned Corps of the US Public Health Service, and NOAA,” according to NMFA.
Camps are offered at 17 locations this year, in 14 states across the nation, and are available to kids 7 to 17 in most (although some are 8-18) – and the best part is that the camps are free for young people whose parents have been, will be, or are currently deployed. The goal of the camps is to give military children the tools they need to help deal with the stresses that result from a parent’s deployment, through a memorable camp experience.
As someone who has a military child, and grandchildren that will deal with their parent’s deployment, I can appreciate the need for kids who are experiencing separation and other issues that only they can understand, to get together with their peers for a time of relating, relaxation, and recreation.
For information on registering for Operation Purple camps, go to the camp registration page at www.MilitaryFamily.org. The camps fill up fast, however, so act quickly, or pass the info along to others that might benefit from it.