I had an awesome time last year fishing for marlin out in Outer Banks, NC. It was so amazing and very therapeutic to me, and I’m pretty sure to others! Thanks to Combat Warriors Inc. I was able to take a day off of all my stressful issues and just be one with myself! Thank you so much for the wonderful opportunity of going out on such an awesome trip!
This was my first time on one of these hunting trips, so bear with me. The deer hunt in Mebane, NC wasn’t filled with sightings of deer or any shooting opportunities for me. However, the guide service was top notch. They tried to put each of us in the best possible spot to see/take a deer. The kindness and hospitality was second to none. I couldn’t have asked for a better service to hunt with. The food was top notch; they definitely kept us fed! It also gave my co-workers and myself time to actually sit and chat with each other, helping me get to know members I normally never get a chance to talk with. I will never pass up the opportunity to go on this hunt in the future, work schedule depending, of course. Thanks again for the opportunity.
I’ve told you this before, 20 years in the Marine Corps and the Combat Warriors hunts were the first veteran specific hunts that I have participated in. They are awesome! Everyone involved in the hunts makes us feel welcome and makes it easy to enjoy the atmosphere. The hunting is obviously a huge part of it, but the time spent around the fire or the discussions over dinner are memories that I will cherish for the rest of my life. I like that the hunts are not service specific and that there are old and young veterans participating. This helps foster traditions and also teaches through shared experiences and hardships.
I plan on making the Combat Warriors hunts a part of my hunting season for as long as they’ll have me. I truly believe that I met people who will be my friends for many years to come. I also believe we have more in common than just hunting, we all care about our military men and women and appreciate what they do. Thanks again for inviting me.
“Never Forget Our Fallen”
I just wanted to say thank you very much for having me out. You hit the nail on the head when you said that this is what America is about. I could simply not asked for a finer group of Americans to have spent my weekend with. I really wish my wife would have joined me to see yours and their operation. Taking wounded warriors out for this kind of experience, in my opinion, is better than any therapy session. Feeling the togetherness, excitement, and support that these red-blooded Americans have for us and OUR way of life has likely opened a new door to a few of the guys who never had the opportunity to experience this type of wholesome community. The hospitality, respect, and hard work ethic pulses through every member young and old.
It is Tuesday morning 12/10/2013. I have come home this week to prepare and ready myself for another out of state hunt but also to take time to reflect what I personally took place in this past weekend at Twin Oaks Hunting Club. When I arrived home Sunday afternoon I first knelt down at my front door entrance and hugged my six year old son, AJ, who all week prior wanted to go to the club “to be with the guys” (as he said). Oh how I wish now that I had done this. Then I stood up and with tears in my eyes as I grabbed my wife and gave her a big hug and then a kiss. I looked at her and told her that “I had a life-changer this weekend.”
You see, I hunt more than most people and you could say I have been blessed to go to many different places in North Carolina, nine other states, and one different country to do this. Every hunt that I go on that could be just a weekend hunt at my club or a 14-day hunt to Canada. I have never not pulled into my driveway or half way down before my dog starts to bark and alerts my wife and child so they are ready and standing at my front door with a smile and the most welcoming love I ever have known. As soon as I pulled down my driveway after this weekend Combat Warrior hunt and I saw the door opening and knowing they would be waiting for me to stop and get out for my hugs and kisses it then hit me like a baseball bat. Yes, I get homesick on my hunts, and yes, I am sure my wife and child miss me greatly, but I could not know what my dear new friends like Clay Culpepper, PV2 Nicholas C. Culpepper, Mark Craft’s son Danny Craft and all of the families of our brave men and women that have went through during their time away from each other in serving our country and defending us Americans. I am sure in you seeing your family for the first time from going through the battles and seeing your sons or daughters after not knowing their troubles and challenges had to be indescribable. All I can say is every time from this day forward I will look at my drive way after a short or long hunt much differently then you will ever know and thank you for that.
I have been reading all the emails from this past weekend from the Warriors as well as the Twin Oak Members and just taking them all in. I have read “that it was a great weekend,” “it was a fun weekend,” “that Twin Oaks busted their butts for this cause,” “that people will not ever forget this time or people they had met,” that “how appreciative the Warriors were for this event,” and on and on. After reading and reflecting back on this weekend I feel like the Reporter Joe Galloway (Actor Barry Pepper) from the movie “We Were Soldiers” the movie about Lieutenant General (Ret.) Hal Moore (actor Mel Gibson) in the Battle of Ia Drang on November 14, 1965. Near the end of the movie and after the fighting was over “Joe” was looking all around him with tears in his eyes and saw “Lieutenant Moore” and said “Sir, I do not know how to tell this story.” That is how I feel after this weekend.
I stood in the club's yard this past weekend after all the people involved with the event and club members had left and looked around knowing that it was not a tragic battlefield and thank God for that, but it was a great and life changing event that had just taken place where I stood. I saw the little American flags blowing in the wind and that is when it started sinking in for me. I guess I was worried so much about making things perfect I didn't take time to look at what was going on around me.
Our brave men and women made this possible for me to be a part of a great club like Twin Oaks. They have, as many before them, and many after them, fought for our freedom to go into the woods with our children and friends. They have fought for us to be able to be free enough to start clubs like Twin Oaks. They have stitched the blanket of freedom that we and our families pull over our bodies each and every day and night to feel safe in our daily lives. I will not lie about this but I stood in that empty yard and broke down with tears. I felt I could have done more for the men as they have given so much to me and my family this past weekend and wish I would have done so now. I felt so blessed to have met each and every one of them. I wish I could have had a chance to get to know them better.
I left the club with a one hour drive ahead of me and I thought back on every little detail that I could and laughed and cried at the same time. From sitting in the stand with Danny and hearing just a few stories of his life in the military. I cried on the stories but laughed about me telling him to “just shoot the one in the middle” as there was only three deer in the field when I last looked but as I was saying that the forth one came into the herd. Then I said “hell shoot either one in the middle.” To me saying at the end “hell shoot any of them” because at this time about nine was standing there. Yes, this is when I started laughing. Great hunt and great memories. I thought about all the Warriors in that one hour ride. If I am being honest I am still thinking about them.
My heart is stronger now and I have a fire in me as well. I want more. I will work hard each and every day as a husband and father. I will go the extra mile if you will to do good for the people around me. I will take time to feel the wind, rain, and sunshine on my face. I will pray for the fallen that are not with us anymore. I will give when I have nothing else to give. I will give respect without first receiving it. I will do more each day of the week. I will love without being loved. I will do these things because the men that I just met this past weekend have done all of this and a hundred times more for me and they didn't even know my name until this past weekend. I at least owe them that back and my lifelong appreciation. I will support the Combat Warriors as long as they will have me and need me. Thank you men for being a part of my life. Thank you for fighting for me and our country I live in. Thank you for being unknown heroes and known heroes. Thank you for helping me understanding my driveway.
Jason H. Hocutt
Twin Oaks Hunt Club, Founder & President
I want to thank you for allowing me the opportunity to go marlin fishing. It held a spot deep in my heart since it was one thing me and my grandfather had always dreamed of doing. We were never afforded the chance to go due to him finding out on my birthday while I was in Afghanistan that he had stage 4 pancreatic cancer. I was able to make it home just in time to say goodbye. However, we did not get to do many of the things we had dreamed of doing; and now because of Combat Warriors Inc., we are able to cross that off of our bucket list.
Words cannot begin to express my gratitude for what you guys have done for all of us and would I would definitely love to be a part of any further Combat Warriors Inc. event. Thank you again from the bottom of my heart.
Thank you for what you men do, I will personally do all that I can for Combat Warriors Inc.!
I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for my experience on the Combat Warriors Deer Hunt in Franklin County this past November. The Combat Warriors organization and all the local supporters made this event absolutely unforgettable. Owning a company in the outdoor industry I know firsthand the logistical requirements it takes to plan, resource, and execute such an event. Being also an Active Duty member of the United States Army, I believe that I’m also speaking for many the fact that organizations such as the Combat Warriors and all the supports of these events are the true American heroes. I am looking forward to attending and supporting any future events that Combat Warriors conducts. KEEP UP THE GREAT WORK!
Xtreme Velocity Outdoors, President
I have attended several of the Combat Warrior events. These guys are by far some of the greatest Americans that I have known. The events bring warriors in contact with appreciating Americans who understand and appreciate their sacrifice and really give these warriors an awesome experience.
I was invited to attend a duck hunt hosted by Combat Warriors in January 2013. Not knowing what to expect, a buddy and I arrived prepared to sleep in our truck and eat canned tuna for the weekend. Instead, we’re instantly welcomed by the members and given the red carpet treatment. The hospitality shown to us in all aspects (the hunting, accommodation, meals and events) was first class. On top of that, we also were able to shoot our limit of ducks and build some lasting relationships. Combat Warriors is made up of true patriots and I am humbled to be invited to participate.