Good Luck, Bad Luck and Outa’ Luck
This week, we serve up three totally unrelated stories that have absolutely nothing in common, except for the twists of fate we often refer to as luck.
Soldotna, Alaska fishing guide Greg Brush was walking his dogs not far from his home on the morning of Aug. 2 when he turned at the sound of a snapping twig. There, less than 20 yards away, was a charging 900-pound brown bear, “ears back, head low and motorin’ full speed.”
In a single motion, Brush drew and fired his Ruger .454 Casull revolver. One shot proved fatal.
“Came with zero warning,” Brush later told the Anchorage Daily News. “No woof, no popping of the teeth, no standing up, nothing like what you think.”
Brush told the newspaper he carries a pistol on his walks because bears have chased his dogs in the past.
“It doesn’t get any closer. He slid by me on his chin when I shot him,” Brush said. “I was backpedaling as fast as I could. I wasn’t even aiming. I tripped over my own feet as I pulled the trigger.”
Brush estimated the bear weighed 900-plus pounds, and was 15 to 20 years old. It had grass packed in its molars and little fat on its bones. He said he figured the bruin was starving and saw an opportunity.
“I never ever thought it would happen to me. It’s always some other (guy), right? It totally wiped me out…(I was) dry heaving and hyperventilating, with some abdominal cramping.”
The fishing guide considers himself fortunate.
“Total luck shot,” he said.
Sgt. Adam Rush, a native of Wyoming, decided to try fishing on North Carolina’s Blue River, where he’s with the 8th Engineer Support Battalion stationed at Camp Lejeune.
Rush’s trouble began while he was bass fishing March 27 when the battery on his trolling motor died. An alligator, which Rush later said was around 9 feet long, left the bank and headed straight for the stringer of fish hanging from his 10-foot boat.
Rush said when he pulled his stringer of fish into the boat, the alligator tried to climb into the tiny craft.
“He tried to get into the boat, so I hit him in the head with the oar,” the Marine said.
After breaking his paddle defending himself and his boat, Rush called 911 and reported that the big gator was circling his stranded vessel.
“I was freakin’ out,” Rush said of the incident. “I’m from Wyoming. I’ve never seen an alligator that big and up close before.”
By the time Onslow County Sheriff’s deputies and officers with the N. Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission arrived at the scene, another boater had towed the 27-year-old safely back to the shore.
But his bad luck didn’t end there.
After further investigation, wildlife officers cited Rush for keeping under-sized bass and using an unregistered boat.
4. Best Final Resting Place of 2009
Adam Dancy says it’s how his late father wanted it.
Adam’s father, Albert Dancy, 50, met an unfortunate end when he was shot and killed on Feb. 15, in what authorities say began as a domestic dispute involving his ex-wife and another man.
While he was alive, the elder Dancy, a West Virginia carpenter, coal miner, avid hunter and angler, always told his son that when his time on Earth was done, he wanted to be buried in his 1967 turquoise-green Chevy pick-up truck.
“He said it always joking around, but he said it for so many years it was pretty much serious to me,” said Adam, 24. “I always took him seriously. It was the last thing I could do for him.”
So in early March, on a private plot located on Adam Dancy’s Clay County place that once belonged to his father, Albert was laid to rest, in a coffin carried in the truck’s bed.
Inside the coffin, Dancy was dressed in his favorite camouflaged hunting clothes. His Old Timer folding knife was in his pocket and the .243 Remington that he used to kill a nice 10-point buck the year before last was at his side.
In accordance with environmental regulations, the truck’s tires were removed and all fluids were drained before it was placed in the ground.
The younger Dancy told the Charleston Daily Mail there was no deep symbolic meaning to the interment, like burying his father with things he might find useful in the hereafter.
“We gave him a truck with no tires. We gave him a gun with no shells,” Dancy said. “He’ll be s**t out of luck.”