My most cherished firearm is a Browning Belgium Auto-5 that my grandpa, Pop, left to me when he passed 40 years ago. This story from Gary really hit home with me:
Hey Mike: I really enjoy your TV show and the way you tell the story. I am going to share with you an incredible true story that just unfolded within the last year.
Last year I reconnected with an old friend on Facebook; the last time I had seen her was roughly 1975. Her parents and mine used to be friends many years ago. In fact our dads used to deer hunt together, roughly 45 years ago.
My dad, brother and I deer hunted for many years together, until my dad passed away in 1990. She asked if my brother and I still hunted. I told her my brother and dad stopped hunting the same year, roughly in the late 70s. But I still deer hunt every year, and I also bird hunt and shoot trap every week with a bunch of friends from high school (graduated in 1976).
She said the reason I am asking: “I have your dad’s old shotgun that he sold to my dad, would you be interested in it?”
I asked her what gun it was. She said a Browning Belgium shotgun. I was floored! My dad always talked about 2 shotguns he used to own and wished he’d never got rid of, and the old A-5 was one of them. I don’t really remember seeing either of those shotguns growing up, but I told her, “Yes, I would love to have that gun, how much would you like for it?”
Her answer blew me away. “It’s not about the money,” she said, “it’s about the sentimental value and getting things back where they belong.” She offered to give me the gun! We met at her mother’s house a month later. She gave me the gun and we talked for a couple of hours about our parents and the old days.
Thinking back now, I remember my dad telling my brother and me about a large buck he shot with the old Browning A-5 when he was hunting with my friend’s dad. I have the rack, hanging with my racks and one of my grandpa’s.
I normally shoot a .300 Win. Mag. for deer, but later on this fall I plan on taking my dad’s old A-5 shotgun to see if I can take a buck with it and bring this whole thing full circle. With God’s help I will be able to put a very special mount on the wall.—Thanks, Gary Guth
Man that is a great story. Just goes to show that hunting isn’t all shooting animals. The biggest thing we chase is memories and I am sure that gun brings back a bunch for you that mean more than words can say. Glad to know it is now with someone who know it’s true value . God bless you and good luck this year. Hope you drop a big one with the 20 for your Dad.
Like Luke- I have my great uncles Mod. 29 Remington pump action shotgun and his Savage Super Sportsman 30-06 he purchased in the early 1920’s. The ’06 has aperature sights and was and is very accurate. Uncle Gus was a crack shot per many of his friends and he hunted deer as well as grouse in the northern tier of PA back in the “Glory Days” My uncle once told me when you walked in the recovering timbered hills of Tioga and Potter Co. you could flush a hundred grouse in a days hike. His Remington was a 12 ga. bored modified. It has taken many doves here in GA and I plan to take it back to PA to our place yearly for grouse and pheasant.
Happy New Year Luke, Mike et al.
THAT STORY GAVE ME GOOSEBUMPS!! Too cool. My most prized possessions include my maternal Grandfathers Browning Citori, handed to me after his funeral and my paternal Grandfathers Winchester Model 50 goose gun…he called me over then handed it to me and told me he wanted me to have it just this last summer. I killed my first turkey with it years ago. He’s 95 this year, a member of our greatest generation. And we always snuck Dad’s Browning A5 out to shoot pheasants when we were young men. Thank you for Sharing your story Mr. Guth. You were truly blessed.