Top Shot’s Chris Reed’s Tactical .308 Masterpiece Shoots for Spellman’s Cure!
By Kevin Reese
Cancer is a monster. I can scarcely count the number of times someone has reminded me that if I don’t have anything good to say, don’t say anything. So, out of respect I keep quiet on many fronts; however, cancer is not one of them. Cancer is not good, productive, inspiring, kind, peaceful or respectful. The purest definition is simply “monster”! Cancer is not good; it is counterproductive, frightening, nasty, intrusive and certainly not a respectful of one’s time, resources or physiology. I really didn’t have an opinion on it growing up. It never hit close to home, at least until my pop was diagnosed in March, 2011.
Five months after his diagnosis, we lost him. There were no words left unsaid, for that I felt blessed; however, if wishing upon a star was possible, I would have asked for two; one, to spend more time with him and two, that we could have caught it earlier. Fortunately we were afforded the great blessing our spending our childhood through our young adult years, appreciating his dry wit, coy smiles, booming laughter and occasional look that always told us we were in big trouble! By the time he became ill, we were mature enough to handle the news and progress through the illness from start to finish; many don’t get that time with their loved one. Still, many others do get to experience that when the battle is won here on Earth.
I feel blessed in some small way to have experienced it from the perspective of voice. All too often we feel we have no voice when cast into cancer’s downward spiral, but there is a light at the end of that tunnel! Losing someone close to us to cancer is not the end, it’s the beginning; the beginning of using our voice, our finances and our encouragement to make a difference for others battling their monsters. Michael Spellman is the OTHER I wanted to share with all of you.
Michael Spellman’s storybegan long before I heard about it. While on a recent turkey hunt I took a call from good friend Chris Reed, winner of History Channel’s Top Shot, Season Two. After venting about a tom I had missed earlier that morning, I asked Chris what he was up to. Chris quieted a bit, “I’m building a rifle for a friend of mine, Michael Spellman. He’s another friend of mine battling cancer with a great wife and kids. I’m building a special one for him. We’re going to raffle it off and donate the proceeds to his fight. We need to keep him here to raise his kids. Can you help get the word out?”
Chris couldn’t see my reaction but I hope he sensed it through the air waves, I was beaming. Here was a chance to give my voice in chorus with so many others to help a good father win his fight and somehow reconcile the loss of my own; make our loss a purposeful, positive blessing for great kids, a strong woman and a remarkable man. Asking how I could help spawned this article. I can help by telling ALL OF YOU that you CAN make a difference!
Chris has pulled all of his tricks out of the bag to build this amazing rifle, and you can own it! A raffle is currently underway for a modest $5 per ticket. All of the proceeds will be donated to Spellman’s fight. Recently Reed’s masterpiece was displayed at the 141st NRA Annual Meeting and Exhibits, in St. Louis, Missouri. While those who want to make a difference have purchased raffle tickets in person, tickets may be purchased online at www.MichaelSpellman.org.
What you stand to win…
Beyond the obvious, winning the fight against a monster with Spellman and many others, you may win the masterpiece Reed not only designed but personally assembled!
Here are the specs you’ve been waiting for:
Remington 700 SPS Tactical AAC-SD
CNC precision engraving lets you know just how special this rifle really is; engraved on the left side of the receiver is “Outlaw Custom guns by Chris Reed” with serial # 0001 while “SHOOT FOR A CURE” is engraved on the opposite side, reminding you that your help, along with many others, truly makes a difference!
The rifle will be raffled off at Outlaw Sporting Goods grand opening celebration on July 4, in Greenwood, Mississippi. The winner does not need to be present to win. The lucky winner can pick up the Spellman rifle at Outlaw Sporting Goods or have it shipped to the FFL dealer of their choice.
Feel like you haven’t made a difference? This is your chance to make one! Don’t wait. Get your tickets at www.MichaelSpellman.org.
Michael Spellman is a lifetime resident of Mississippi and has spent his entire life in rural Carroll County. The 1994 Graduate of Carroll Academy led his high school football team, as quarterback, to its one and only state championship victory. He has also protected his community as Chief Deputy Sheriff and is the son of Carla Shackelford and retired Game Warden “Big” Mike Spellman, a father of two and friend of many.
His fight now is one we all hear about way too often. Michael has been diagnosed with cancer. He has not asked for help nor would he even consider such a gesture, but it is our duty as friends of Michael to help him just as he has helped so many.
We are asking for anyone willing to make a donation or to purchase a raffle ticket to do so in his honor.
ALL proceeds go directly to Michael and his family to help with medical expenses and to seek out the best treatment they can afford. Michael does not have any insurance to cover these costs and has sold practically everything he owns to keep from burdening others.
We ask that you please help in any way you are able; please know your contributions will be treasured.
Finally, please take a moment and ask the Lord to look over Michael and his family, and pray that we can help them find peace through this difficult journey, AMEN… and Thank You!
The 2012 RMEF/Leupold World Elk Calling Championships will be held as part of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation (RMEF) convention and International Sportsmen’s Exposition, Feb. 2-4, at the Las Vegas Convention Center.
The raucous event is open to the public.
Elk are the most vocal species of North American deer. The signature call is a “bugle,” a loud, high-pitched whistle or scream used during mating season by bulls trying to attract cows and advertise their dominance to other bulls. Bulls also grunt at cows straying from their harem. Cows bark to warn of danger, mew to keep track of each other and whine to signal distress. Calves bleat when they are lost.
Mimicking these sounds has been a competitive sport for almost 25 years, but 2012 will be the RMEF/Leupold World Elk Calling Championships’ first time in Las Vegas.
“This event is always a spectacle,” said David Allen, president and CEO of RMEF, a conservation organization focused on conserving and stewarding elk habitat. “It’s been featured by The New York Times and CBS Sunday Morning, and now we’re pleased to introduce this competition to a city that appreciates spectacles like no one else.”
“If a bull elk shows up and rips the doors off the Las Vegas Convention Center, at least you’ll know why,” he joked.
Competition is held in six divisions: professional, men’s, women’s, natural voice, youth (age 11-17) and pee-wee (age 10 and under). Amateur-level callers have 30 seconds to make general cow elk sounds, followed by bull sounds. Professionals are required to make specific calls such as bugles and barks. Most callers blow across a latex reed placed inside the mouth. In the natural voice division, however, no reeds are allowed. A variety of plastic tubes are used like megaphones, giving the sounds realistic resonance.
Judges–biologists, naturalists and hunters–score each competitor anonymously.
Prizes and cash ranging from $500 to $2,500 will be awarded for first- through third-place in all six divisions.
Prize sponsors include Leupold, Block Fusion, Cabela’s, Horn Hunter Packs, Hoyt, Kershaw Knives, Montana Decoy, Montana Silversmiths, New Archery Products (NAP), Remington, Schnee’s and Traditions Performance Firearms.
Defending world champions: Professional Division–Corey Jacobsen, Boise, Idaho; Men’s Division–Dirk Durham, Moscow, Idaho; Women’s Division–Misty Jacobsen, Priest River, Idaho; Natural Voice Division–Michael Hatten, Elko, Nev.; Youth Division–Greg Hubbell Jr., Belmont, Calif.; Pee-Wee Division–Colton Crawford, McMinnville, Ore.
To compete in the 2012 RMEF/Leupold World Elk Calling Championships, see complete rules, registration info and entry fees posted at www.rmef.org.
Preliminary rounds of competition begin Fri., Feb. 3, at 10:00 a.m. Finals begin Sat., Feb. 4, at 9:00 a.m., followed by awards and crowning of new world champions.
Spectator seating is included with daily admission to the RMEF convention and expo: $12 per person, free for youth 15 and under, and free for active military with military ID.
The expo includes attractions, displays and activities for the whole family, plus 385 exhibiting companies in booths filled with outfitted hunting and fishing opportunities, art, gear, firearms and everything elk and outdoors. Hourly seminars led by authorities detail hunting strategies, destinations and gear; urban and wilderness survival; fishing; and travel nearby and around the world. Cabela’s will sponsor game-calling clinics. International Sportsmen’s Expositions, which produces America’s premier hunting, fishing and travel shows, is managing the exhibit hall and expo. Expo hours: Thurs., Feb. 2, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.; Fri., Feb. 3, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.; Sat., Feb. 4, 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
The convention, expo and RMEF/Leupold World Elk Calling Championships help raise awareness and funding for conservation. In 2011, RMEF passed the 6 million acre-mark in habitat conserved or enhanced for elk and other wildlife. In Nevada alone, RMEF has completed 190 different conservation projects affecting 275,870 acres.
About the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation:
RMEF is leading a conservation initiative that has protected or enhanced habitat on over 6 million acres–an area larger than Yellowstone, Grand Canyon, Glacier, Yosemite, Rocky Mountain and Great Smoky Mountains national parks combined. RMEF also is a strong voice for hunters in access, wildlife management and conservation policy issues. RMEF members, partners and volunteers, working together as Team Elk, are making a difference all across elk country. Join us at www.rmef.org or 800-CALL ELK.
About International Sportsmen’s Expositions (ISE):
Founded in 1975, ISE produces five consumer sportsman shows across the western United States, including Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada (Las Vegas) and Utah. Check dates and show special events at www.SportsExpos.com.