Oklahoma Four-Year-Old Showcases Hunting Skills

Saturday, October 8th 2016, 8:47 pm
By: Tess Maune

It’s week two of deer hunting season here in Oklahoma and there are thousands of hunters of all ages, but one of the youngest might be 4-year-old Gentry Pritchard of Grove.

At just 3-foot-8 and 36 pounds, Gentry is so small when he practices shooting his crossbow he has to stand on a chair to scope out his target.

And his dad Rusty Pritchard is always by his side.

“He picked it up pretty fast,” said Rusty. “I still gotta adjust it, but he can look through the scope and get it on target and pull the trigger.”

Baby pictures prove Gentry was destined to be an outdoorsman. But last week, he put his hunting skills to the test for the first time during a hunt with his dad at the L/D Ranch just south of San Angelo, Texas.

On the drive down, Gentry studied.

"All the way to Texas we'd pull deer up on our phone and make him point to where to shoot the deer at and he picked it up pretty quick," Rusty said. 

Before he took aim at a deer, a group of turkeys came in.

“I shot my first turkey,” a camo-clad Gentry told his dad, who was recording cell phone video.

After the turkey hunt, the father-son duo got back in the hunting blind. And just before dark, the young hunter bagged a seven-point buck, his first deer ever.

“He made a heck of a shot at 56 yards on it,” said Rusty. "He's a little advanced for his age, I think."

And he made the shot all on his own, with only a little coaching from his dad.

“I never looked through the scope one time,” Rusty added. “I said, ‘Make sure it's behind the shoulder,' and he said, 'It is,' and he shot and he hit it good.”

And because they were hunting to help thin the heard, Gentry went to the blind one more time proving once again that he's a pro with his crossbow. He took at shot at 30 yards and took down his second ever deer, this time a doe.

“It means a lot to me,” said Rusty. “I [was] real proud. I was probably more excited than he was.”

Gentry's harvests will give his family food all winter.

“It was [exciting] and fun and crazy,” said Gentry.

But the memories he made with his dad will last a lifetime and his new love for hunting will do the same.

"Hunting's a dying sport now, we've got to really teach our kids to get out there and try it. At least try it. Not everybody's gonna like it, but hopefully he'll carry it on and his brother and sister will carry it on, too. It's just all being outdoors and not being behind a video game," Rusty said. " I see a lot of hunts [together] in the future."