The worst nightmare for hunters played out last month in Sylva, North Carolina when an avid turkey hunter was shot with a Remington 1187 by his longtime hunting buddy.
Raymond Bunn has shared his horrifying story on Facebook, which played out early in the morning back on April 12th. The pair of hunters were very experienced with the process of the hunt, and both had even shot a turkey a piece earlier that morning.
Raymond and his hunting partner had hunted countless times over the years (his friend with over 65 years of experience), but Bunn did notice that his friend seemed a little more tired and out of sorts when they walked to a spot active with turkeys that they had scouted out the previous day.
Bunn helped his 80-year-old friend get set up facing away from where he planned on setting up his own seat about 30 yards behind him deeper in the woods. The pair knew that a turkey had a roosted somewhere in that area, so all that was left to do was wait.
Raymond started to work different calls to draw the turkey in, and the gobbler responded and came crashing down from the tree it was nested in.
With Raymond still calling on the box call, the 80-year-old hunter turned toward his buddy.
For almost 10 minutes, Raymond attempted to call his friend’s cell phone to tell him that he was pointing the gun towards him, but the friend never picked up the phone.
The 80-year-old looked down the sights of his shotgun and pulled the trigger.
Bunn shielded himself as much as he could, covering his side and his head with his left arm.
Raymond shared the story on his Facebook page, detailing the story, how he reacted, and warning other hunters to look for signs of cognitive decline in their hunting friends.
The pictures paired with the story show just how much damage the shotgun shot did and how lucky Raymond Bunn is to be alive:
“April 12 6:44 am Duplin County NC in rural eastern NC and I am dialing 911 after being shot while hunting for wild Turkey. I am shot in my upper left arm and left side. Only 5 minutes earlier, I’m trying to get the attention of the man I’m hunting with to answer his phone.
He is pointing his shotgun at me at less than 30 yards. I waved my arms and threw my hat towards him while screaming and hollering ‘no don’t shoot!’
He wouldn’t lower the shotgun and the motion evidently made him more convinced I was a turkey. I braced for the shot and leaned over and covered my head and neck with my left arm. Reckon I got lucky and am able to post this. Hunting and shooting is serious as hell and don’t let your guard down .
There were no decoys out, no tail fans carried, no wing feathers. Just me calling and movement. Please look for signs of fatigue in older hunters and and any strange behavior in any age hunters you may be sitting with.
Yes, the creator was looking out for me. Hunt safe!”
Raymond luckily got the treatment he needed and is now recovering from the incident.
He shared an additional post on his page showing his good nature and asking others to be cognizant of those around them, especially when it comes to making sure someone is right-minded enough to operate a deadly weapon:
“I have been hunting for wild turkey 41 years. I have had a few close calls with other hunters as the majority of the time I have hunted public land.
This post was intended only to educate and make us all aware of what can happen if things go wrong. The man that shot me was hunting with me and we have hunted many years together safely.
Father Time catches up with us all is what happened here. Please take a lesson from this. Don’t ignore changes or unusual behavior in your hunting partners.
We all need to be good to each other and take care of each other.”