This past weekend, the Honorable American Veterans Afield (HAVA) hosted their Pacific Northwest Shooting Range Opening Day at the Tacoma Sportsmen’s Club. The field day event brought together nearly 75 veterans for a day of shooting, camaraderie and prizes.
HAVA worked with Tacoma Sportsmen’s Club President Mac Taylor to offer disabled veterans and injured active duty military guests a shooting experience they won’t soon forget. The stations available were Trap Shooting, Primitive Archery, Slingshot, Long Range Rifle, Red Dot Pistol, and a Genesis Tactical Shotgun stage hosted by VerTac Training (https://www.verrettstactical.com/).
The event lasted 3 days with a different group of guests each day. This allowed for maximum attendance from local veterans and active duty service members. Each day began with attendees receiving a goody bag of loot followed quickly by an introduction to primitive slingshot shooting. The attendees quickly learned this unique skill, leading to many smiles and many boos. After lunch, guests headed to the firing range, allowing each participant to enjoy the smell of gunpowder and instruction from HAVA’s expert staff.
“Getting to a new range and a new area can be challenging,” said Chris Fleming, event co-director and HAVA firearms instructor. “Our staff of industry professionals and expert instructors never disappoints. They really are there for the selfless task of serving those who have served and still serve us on the front lines.” Fleming continues, “We will be visiting people in the Pacific Northwest again. They are true warriors, and their honor and character are unmatched. Thank you for coming and giving us the opportunity to pamper you for everything you have done for us.”
Adds one guest: “I didn’t know how much I needed this experience. The HAVA staff allowed me to reconnect and do what I really enjoy, shooting amazing firearms and connecting with my fellow veterans. I can’t wait until next year!”
As the ranks cooled off and guests gathered in the clubhouse, they were treated to a musical performance by HAVA firearms instructor Hunter Sharp. Hunter traveled from southern Illinois to work with the participants at the shooting range. “Stories were shared and smiles were worn with pride. It was an honor to participate in this picnic with our guests, as their sacrifices have meant so much to me and our nation,” Sharp said.
HAVA would like to thank the immediate sponsors for their support on some of the amazing products raffled off at this event; Leupold Optics, https://www.leupold.com/. Sure, https://www.surefire.com/. First Spear, https://www.first-spear.com/. Genesis Arms, https://www.genesisarms.com/. Tacoma Sportsmen’s Club, https://tacomassportsmensclub.com/index.html. SIG SAUER, https://www.sigsauer.com/. National Shooting Sports Foundation, https://www.nssf.org/. Glock, https://us.glock.com/. We couldn’t be successful without the support of these amazing companies, as well as our supporting sponsors. His generosity is unmatched in the outdoor community.
HAVA is a 501(c)3 organization formed by companies in the shooting and outdoor industries with the purpose of raising awareness and further assisting disabled veterans in their healing process through guided hunts, shooting events and other outdoor sports activities. Sponsoring companies are Smith & Wesson, National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), SIG SAUER, Academi, Armada Ammunition, Arnold Defense, Crimson Trace, FMG Publications, GLOCK, Hornady, Leapers/UTG, Leupold & Stevens, Mossberg, RSR Group, Ruger, Surefire, Taurus, Vista Outdoor/Federal, XS Sights and Yamaha Outdoors among numerous partner companies. For more information about HAVA, visit: www.honoredveterans.org.