The story of a special boy and his hunt with Kilgore’s Kids.
Today is Aidan Proctor’s 12th birthday. When he and his twin sister were born at 25 weeks and weighed less than 2 pounds, Aidan wasn’t expect to see his fifth day.
“He’s not supposed to be here. Doctors gave him zero percent chance,” said Aidan’s father, Donnie Proctor.
The affects of his premature birth on his health have been profound—the surgeries too numerous to list.
This story is not about that. It’s about a very special boy, a special family, a special organization and a remarkable day in the Georgia deer woods.
On Saturday, Nov. 9, two weeks before his 12th birthday, Aidan Proctor shot a beautiful Banks County buck. The story of that hunt begins back in July when Donnie Proctor took his family to the Ag-Pro Outdoor Blast in Duluth.
Donnie said, “We were at the Outdoor Blast, and Aidan was in his special chair, and David called him over.”
David is David Kilgore, who always has a booth at area hunting shows where he can talk to folks about his non-profit organization called Kilgore’s Kids.
Through Kilgore’s Kids, David and his wife Sandra—along with family, sponsors and people who just want to help—take special-needs kids on outdoor trips.
On the Kilgore’s Kids website, David tells the story of how it began.
“I’ve been asked several times how Kilgore’s Kids came into existence, and why I am a part of it,” David said.
It began during a hunting show when David met a man who ran an organization for taking disabled kids on hunting trips.
“Feeling led to help, we offered to take them on a hunt. We set it all up with seven disabled kids going on a hunt with us. A friend of mine came in with a group of his friends to help out. ”
That friend was a preacher, and although it wasn’t planned as part of the hunt, he gave a message by the campfire at lunch one day.
“It was an incredible message that reached down deep into the hearts of everyone present. Nine people accepted Christ that afternoon, including my oldest son.
“A month or so later, we were at another hunting show where a huge burly biker man and his wife walked up to me with tears in his eyes… he started telling me about how he had been at the lowest of lows and on the verge of suicide. He said, ‘One month ago I was going to kill myself, and for some reason wanted to go to this hunt (the hunt for disabled kids) with my nephew.’
“His life was turned around by a message that wasn’t even part of the scheduled events. That’s when we realized that this is where God led us to be,” David said.
There’s another great story on the website about a disabled youngster who killed a deer.
After his hunt, the boy said to David Kilgore, “I can tell by your build that you like football and you were very big in sports. My dreams growing up were different than most other kids. I knew I wouldn’t ever be able to do what they could in sports, but when I’m hunting I’m on an even playing field as everybody else.”
David said, “Then, with that same grin, he looked up at me and said, ‘How’s your dreams in life coming?’
“At that minute I realized that little boy just taught me a life lesson in priorities and life long goals.”
• • •
Aidan Proctor and his family live in Walton County. He loves hunting and fishing, and he loves being outdoors with his mom and dad and his twin sister Ella Grace. When he was at the Outdoor Blast with his family, David Kilgore saw Aidan and called him over to the Kilgore’s Kids booth.
Donnie recalls a special connection right away.
“Him and Aidan started talking, and after a while David said, ‘You want to go on a hunt?’ Aidan said, ‘Yeah, let’s go!’
“We kept in touch. David asked what Aidan needed. He got the special shooting bench that he made for Aidan. And then he got the plunger for his gun and the scope adapter so the crosshairs come up on my phone. When Aidan gets the crosshairs on the deer, all he has to do is push the plunger with his thumb. They made everything adaptable, so Aidan can be able to do it on his own.
“It all just came together. When David called and asked, ‘Can y’all go this weekend?’ I said yes we can.
“Aidan all week was wearing me out, ‘Are we going today? Are we going today?’”
The group was set to hunt a guy’s private farm in Banks County, where he only lets kids hunt.
“That blew me away that he let Aidan go sit in his best stand, and that’s all because of David Kilgore and what he does with special needs kids.”
They got up to David’s house near Commerce about 11 a.m., and David set Aidan’s gun up. Then they went out to the range and made sure the gun was sighted in and made sure Aidan could work the plunger.
Once they got everything moved to the blind and got Aidan in position, they hadn’t been sitting for 30 minutes when a doe walked out.
“I told him, ‘Son you have to be patient.’ Then another doe came out. Then at about 5:15 p.m. a big buck came out.”
After Aidan shot the buck, he killed two does before the hunt was over.
“By 5:45 he had three deer on the ground,” Donnie said. “Of course right away he had called momma, granddaddy, he called people on the way home. He was so excited.”
David Kilgore makes it a priority that these hunts are special for the siblings of special needs kids, too. Ella Grace was hunting in a different stand.
“As long as her brother got to kill one, she was thrilled. She bawled like a baby she was so happy.”
• • •
A lot of time and effort went into making Aidan Proctor’s hunt take place. If you would like to support the efforts of Kilgore’s Kids, please visit www.kilgoreskids.com. There’s a raffle going on right now for an amazing custom Rattlesnake Savage .308. Tickets are just $10, and every penny goes toward making hunts like Aidan’s possible. There’s also a Paypal link at the website to donate directly.
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