Hunting with a legend

| May 6, 2014
Hunting: Two time world champion turkey caller Eddie Salter accompanied John Rice (center) on a turkey hunt Saturday, May 3 near the Ohio Trophy Outfitters lodge which hosted the hunters and provided the land for the hunt. Also on the hunt were Greg Rice and pictured left is Kindell Keeton. Beacon photo by Mark Fortune

Hunting: Two time world champion turkey caller Eddie Salter accompanied John Rice (center) on a turkey hunt Saturday, May 3 near the Ohio Trophy Outfitters lodge which hosted the hunters and provided the land for the hunt. Also on the hunt were Greg Rice and pictured left is Kindell Keeton. Beacon photo by Mark Fortune

WALHONDING – River View senior John Rice was awarded with the NWTF / ODNR youth scholarship hunt, one of only a few in the state of Ohio. One of the honors was going on a hunt with a recognized turkey persona. Two time world champion turkey called Eddie Salter, who hails from Evergreen, Ala., accompanied Rice on the hunt. John’s father Greg said, “This was a great honor and I’m speechless about the experience with these two nationally known turkey hunters.”

Said Salter, “I’ve been a part of coming up here for a number of years. I think it’s outstanding. We’ve had good years, being real successful. This is the first year we’ve drawn a blank. The weather and the turkeys were just not cooperating. But to be able to get out in the woods and mentor a young person, and then you run into them later in life, you try to instill something that will keep going.”

“I’m real impressed with the character of these young people. Any time I go into the woods with a youngster I learn a lot about them and what’s going on in their life. We need to continue to encourage our youngsters to do something that they’ll get rewarded for. This is something that they won’t forget and we won’t forget.” Salter hosts a program called “Turkey Man” on television on the Sportsman Channel and is associated with Flextone game calls.

Kindell Keeton of Wilmington, also went on the hunt. Keeton is a competitive turkey hunter, and has won the U.S. Open Championship and is a top 12 finisher in the world. “This is a great opportunity, the NWTF and the ODNR work hard to keep the turkey population strong. Eddie is like an icon to me – I always love helping the youth. This was a great experience.”

John Rice said of the experience, “It was really cool getting to hunt with guys that are so well-known and it’s always fun to hunt with other people. John said he enjoys being outside, it’s peaceful, it keeps your mind off things, it’s a way to get away from everything. Nothing else really exists besides you and the woods.”

Rice said, “Other kids don’t know what they’re missing out on. I’m fortunate and privileged and blessed to be able to go places and hunt. I wish that more people had the opportunities that I’ve had. It’s been one of the most fun rides I’ve been on.”

Rice plans on giving back as he gets older, “Dad always auctions at the local NWTF banquet and I hope to do that one day – and guide a hunt, to give back, especially to the youth. I’ve had a lot of stuff done for me by the NWTF and you just want to give back through that.”

“It was just about the experience this morning. It didn’t really matter – it was just a good time and a good experience to be around these guys. These guys are as good as they claim to be. I took a lot of notes. I would like to thank all of the board members at the Muskingum Valley Chapter NWTF for granting me the scholarship, Shawn Dickey and Gene Goodwin for all the things they did to put this on.”

EDITOR’S NOTE: John was successful on Sunday – harvesting a nice three year old gobbler, hunting with his father Greg and Greg Keeton.

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I live with my beautiful wife Nancy on a small farm just outside Coshocton. We have been married for thirty two years and have two grown children, Jessica and Jacob. Jessica is married to Aaron Mencer and they are employed with Coshocton City Schools. Jacob is a sophomore at Kent State University. I graduated from River View High School, have a Bachelor’s Degree from North Carolina Wesleyan University and am actively involved with the Roscoe United Methodist Church, serve on several local committees and am a member of the Coshocton Kiwanis Club, having served as Past-President. I love reading, especially military thrillers, the Civil War and history in general. My goal is to write a novel. My wife and I are also AdvoCare distributors and encourage anyone wanting to lose weight, gain energy and better health to explore AdvoCare at our website; www.fortunes4advocare.com. I love the media field, innovative technology and have worked in newspapers for over 30 years – in fact, my first job was delivering newspapers. The Beacon is a dream made possible by the support of this community and a great team. I hope to continue serving Coshocton County for many years.

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