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where's your true south?

Growing up in Central Mississippi in the 1980’s, hunting was a major part of my childhood. So much time was spent with family and friends, enjoying the beauty of the outdoors. My grandfather loved taking his grandkids hunting no matter the season. He was our outdoor mentor and hunting partner and we all loved being out there with him and learning. He educated us on hunting from where to find a Spring turkey roosting based on the surrounding terrain to figuring out the direction a deer would feed based on the wind. As we mastered his teachings, my brothers and I never failed to call and give him full details of every hunt we went on without him. Sadly, we lost my grandfather in 2014, but he is 100% with us every time we hunt or fish.

When I became a father, it became clear to me that those trips with my grandfather were not just time together or hunting lessons. They were forever memories he helped create that I could pass down to my son, Skyler, and he too could pass on to his children one day. From the age of two, Skyler was at the front door, waiting for me to get home, to share the details of my hunts and examine my game. He took his first deer at just five and has loved the outdoors ever since. He is always either fishing or hunting - for most anything that walks or flies!

We have been fortunate enough to spend countless hours in the outdoors together - from pheasant hunting in the Midwest, to deer hunting in upstate PA, to duck hunting at our camp in Arkansas in flooded timber on the Cache River, and of course, we’ve done lots of fishing in the Gulf. We have so many stories to share of our time together in the outdoors and so many lessons that we have been able to learn – together. All those early, cold, and wet mornings are such great opportunities to enjoy a sunrise with my hunting partner & son and to be thankful for the time he and I are sharing doing something we both love so much.

Thanks to my grandfather, I have been able to teach Skyler the same things I was taught and teach them the same way – with the emphasis being for him to have a love for the outdoors and with the hope that he passes the same things down to his kids one day. After all, if it weren’t for multiple generations of outdoors knowledge being passed down, how else will Skyler’s kids know, just by looking at a tree with moss on one side, which direction to then look to find “True South”?