by American Hunter Staff - Thursday, July 6, 2017
Photo Courtesy Facebook Page of Senator Shelley Hughes
Quick thinking and good instincts helped an 11-year-old boy save himself and his family from a charging brown bear on June 18, according to a report from the Juneau Empire.
According to reports, Elliot Clark of Hoonah, Alaska, was walking through the woods several miles south of town with his uncle and two other family members, en route to a nearby fishing hole, when a brown bear emerged from the forest and charged the group.
The bear collided with the first two members of the party—including Clark’s uncle, Craig Stoltzfus, who was also armed—and knocked them aside. Clark reacted quickly, raising his pump-action shotgun and peppering the bear with birdshot.
In an interview with the Juneau Empire, Clark’s father, Lucas, said that the first shot did little to slow the bear. The second and third shots, though, were slugs, and struck the sow in the face—which proved enough to bring the bruin to the ground just a few feet from where Elliot stood. A fourth shot from Clark’s shotgun—followed by a final blow from the rifle carried by Stoltzfus, who had recovered—brought the attack to an end. No serious injuries were sustained by the fishing party.
Alaska Senator Shelley Hughes caught wind of the story, and complimented Elliot Clark's quick thinking in a Facebook post.
Alaskan State Troopers investigated the incident, and determined it to be the first Defense of Life or Property (DLP) killing in the Hoonah area this year.
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