Coyote in the air.
This story takes place back in Missouri, where I spent 20 of my years. (well not actually 20 yrs, some of it was called "Home of Record" in the Army files.
I had a friend that was crippled badly from polio or something of the sort. He could not use his right hand, the fingers were sort of twisted up and the arm was weak. He never had much in the way of men friend and was over weight and had thick glasses. Not the sort that would be a good old boy. But I ran into him at a gun show and we both had an interest in guns so we became friends. He could not shoot a rifle or a shotgun with just one hand so his guns were all handguns. My Mom was handicapped so I knew that given a chance and the help of someone that knew how to help the handicap, he could do more than he thought he could do. I sort of took him under my wing and taught him how to shoot those pistols with enough expertise that he felt he was ready to big game hunt. Something he had always dreamed of doing.
We were on my brother-in-law's farm and I put my friend Allen down in a creek bed where the corn field pinched in close. A natural deer highway. I sat up at the end of the wooded part of the creek. I was using my field glasses and checking the edges of the corn field when I spotted what I thought was a German Shepard dog. When it finally came out from behind a tree,and I saw it's bushy tail, I knew it was a coyote. I wondered how long it would take him to get a whiff of human scent from Allen and hightail it out of there. Then I saw it drop into a crouch and start inching it's way toward the creek bank where Allen was sitting with only his hat showing above the low water bank. I couldn't believe my eyes, he was stalking my buddy! I put my rifle to my shoulder and kept watching him creeping across the high water bank toward Allen. Finally when I could see Allen in the right side of my scope and the coyote in the left side of the scope I couldn't wait any longer. It was about 100 yards and I swung my Mdl. 95 Chilean 7x57 Mauser back to the coyote and squeezed the shot off. Just as I shot the coyote leaped and my shot hit a little further to the rear, in the middle of his back. He had already launched himself so he was airborn when hit. Allen heard the shot and turned, only to find the coyote coming down out of the sky with it's mouth wide open and all those teeth showing. Being a city boy with no experience in the woods he fainted dead away.
I ran as fast as I could down the creek and when I got there the coyote was still alive and snapping his teeth. Allen lay under him and for a terrible moment I thought I might have shot him too. But I had called my shot and it had just paralized the coyote but not killed him. I grabbed the coyote by the tail and dragged him off Allen. I then pulled out a 9mmL (Star)out of it's holster and popped the coyote in the middle of the forehead. At the noise of the pistol going off, Allen came to and looking down he saw the coyote at his feet and promptly fainted again. Well it looked like I was going to have to skin this coyote all by myself. I got that done and poured a canteen of water over Allen's head to wake him up.
As near as I could figure out because all that was sticking up,that the coyote could see, was the fuzzy knit hat and the little pom pom on top he must have thought he had a rabbit for supper. Allen was just sure I had saved him from death and he liked to tell his story about the adventure to every one. He made me out to be the best shot in the world, which I didn't mind.
I still have the skin of that coyote although I haven't seen Allen in years. Since I moved to Colorado we have lost touch with each other. But I think about him every time I see that old coyote skin. Last time I heard Allen had found himself a gal and got married. I hope I gave him some confidence in himself to go out and show everyone that handicap didn't mean you couldn't do anything.