PIEDMONT, Mo. -- The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers hosted a deer hunt for veterans with service-related disabilities and mobility impaired individuals on Nov. 5 and 6 in the Watchable Wildlife Area of Clearwater Lake.
“This was the 20th successful year for this hunt and is a great asset in helping manage the deer herd in the Watchable Wildlife Area,” said Clearwater Lake Park Ranger, Chris Alley.
Bobby Graham from Piedmont, John Poitras from Barnhart, Mike Gentry from Cape Girardeau, Larry Broaker from Greenville, James Bell from Belgrade and Anthony Moore from Sikeston were randomly selected for the deer hunt. During the two-day hunt, a total of 42 deer were seen and six were harvested. Graham harvested an eight-point as it approached a food plot, Poitras harvested a spike as it made its’ way across a field, Gentry harvested an eight-point while hunting in big timber, Broaker harvested an eight-point as it skirted a pond, Bell harvested a doe as it made its’s way through the river bottom, and Moore harvested a doe as it fed in a food plot with time winding down the first evening.
Piedmont Processing offered discounted rates to hunters; Ozark Meats offered free processing and Town and Country in Piedmont and Carbi’s in Van Buren donated food for the fish fry with Clearwater volunteers Gale Wells and Greg Moon frying up the fish and sides.
Clearwater Resort gave the hunters discounted rates and the Robert Wake Foundation paid for the hunters’ tags and lodging. They also gave everyone a Wake Foundation hat, a pocketknife and two .22 breakdown survival rifles which James Bell and Anthony Moore won in a raffle.
Quilts of Valor donated by Marion Piper were given to veterans who had not received a quilt before.
These hunts are open only to those with permanent mobility impairment or veterans with service-related disabilities. “It appears the event is growing in popularity because applications are being received not only from hunters in the local community but also throughout Missouri,” Alley said.
USACE is continually searching for new ways to provide everyone with opportunities to use and enjoy our public lands. If you would like to help with this event in the future, or if you have ideas for other events, please call the Clearwater Lake Project Office at 573-223-7777.
The staff at Clearwater Lake encourages you to come out and enjoy your public lands and see first-hand the work being done to enhance your natural resources and other recreational opportunities. For more information on wildlife viewing opportunities or managed hunts at Clearwater Lake, contact the project office.
To make camping reservations call the National Recreation Reservation Service at 1-877-444-6777 or visit www.recreation.gov. Information on lake levels, releases and forecasted Black River conditions, as well as links to the Lower Mississippi River Forecast Center and USACE Water Management websites are located at: www.swl.usace.army.mil/Missions/Recreation/Lakes/Clearwater-Lake/.