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May 3: Command Sergeant Major Ken Barteau

As told by Sergeant Major (ret) Glen Simpson

SITUATION: 3 May 2010, Kentucky, Foggy, 60 degrees

MISSION:
Seek-out and shoot a Longbeard in the head with archery tackle during the Kentucky season without being detected and without mission failure!

EXECUTION:
Well if you can believe it…Ken and I were finally going to get to turkey hunt together! When Ken called and said that he was going to be at Fort Campbell, Kentucky and asked if we could get some turkey hunting in…well the plans were made and the stage was set.

Ken, like most, has always been a “run and gunner” when it comes to turkey hunting so the introduction to taking one with archery tackle was going to be a new and exciting time as he was just about to experience.

The first two days were a wash as the heavy thunderstorms and gale force winds made it impossible to hunt. I had been doing a lot of scouting in preparation for season and had patterned a group of gobblers coming into a winter wheat field early every morning. The bad thing was that they always roosted right on the edge of the field which was going to make it tough to set up a blind and decoys without being detected. We decided to get there very early and set up in the dark under a blanket of fog as we sat in the blind hoping we had pulled it off.

With the first crack of light and a distant crow call our question was answered as the toms gobbled a mere 30 yards behind us, we had done it and now it was time to play the waiting game!

The boss bird finally pitched into the timber and slowly worked his way into the field. There he was and coming straight in. Ken calmly let the bird close into the decoy set and drew back his PSE. The green light for launch was given and the arrow left the bow at lightning speed and skipped off the top of the gobblers head! The bird jumped and immediately went back into semi-strut…What… are you kidding me? Ken slowly grabbed another carbon force arrow, nock’d, drew, settled in and punched the bird dead center of his head with the rage killing his first gobbler with a bow. Now that was as exciting as it gets!

Mission complete!
Until next time… waiting for helicopter extraction and follow-on orders.