Bowhunting successContributors to this thread:
WV Mountaineer 02-Feb-19
Empty Freezer 02-Feb-19
Ron Niziolek 02-Feb-19
altitude sick 03-Feb-19
Charlie Rehor 03-Feb-19
hawkeye in PA 06-Feb-19
Mark Watkins 06-Feb-19
Walt K 06-Feb-19
One year ago today my friend Ron Pittsley had a headache. We didn’t talk. If we had I would’ve known how bad it was,where it was located, what he thought caused it. We wasted a lot of time on the phone, kicking dead horses I guess. We started hunting together in high school and quickly became good friends. We also began to shoot bows and arrows. 1975 was our first bowhunt/adventure. Ron thought it was impossible to kill a deer with a bow but I got a doe. That began 40 yrs of trying to figure this bowhunting thing out. Trying to master archery and learn to use our bows to kill anything we could. We collected bear bows and met our hero Fred Bear at the Chicago sports show. We wouldn’t have met him if our wives hadn’t threatened to tell him we were to chicken to go talk to him. Years later we bought him gold and silver leaf pens to sign autographs with. We loved those signatures on our bows. Ron eventually learned to make bows so we didn’t have to hunt with our prized bear takedowns. Ron killed his first deer, a buck, with wood A handle takedown that we co-owned. It was a great day and he retired his unlucky/lucky hat by filling it with a bloody heart and finally winning our argument that it was lucky. 35 yrs later he sent that hat to me with a touching letter defining our successes along our hunting and life journey. Tomorrow’s the Super Bowl. One year ago as I was getting ready to head over to a friends house to watch the game and talk hunting Ron’s son Trevor called. He choked out that his dad was in a coma. I told him I’d be there in the morning. After a week of praying for a miracle we turned the life support off. Ron didn’t go quickly like they said. His heart was strong, his body’s will to live fierce. I was never anything but proud to call Ron Pittsley my friend. In his end he proved to be as good a man as he hoped to be, and his family champions! On the bow and arrow thing, we learned to shoot pretty well. Some trophies from across North America fell to our arrows. We had real adventures, like our heroes. Tomorrow I’ll be thinking about how much I miss my buddy. It’ll still be a good day. I think my lesson in this is the pursuit of all things bowhunting isn’t just to shoot well and hunt successfully, but to enjoy the journey and appreciate the friends you make along the way. I was lucky to to grow up with and learn these things alongside of Ron Pittsley. He was the best! Randy Giesey
Thanks for sharing that Randy. Definitely puts things in perspective.
Very well written. Thank you for sharing those great memories. Truly sorry for your loss. The lesson you speak of is one I hope we can all know.
Thanks for sharing this! I hope you are able to continue to grasp onto all the great memories you made together!
A man could only hope to be remembered this fondly by a friend. Sounds like you both are very fine gentlemen. Thank you for that beautifully written tribute.
Thank you for sharing that Randy. Very touching tribute to Ron.
From: WV Mountaineer
Hold on to the memories. They are what defined his hunting life. I'm sure he'd want it the same way.
Thanks for sharing. I don't have many but I have great friends and am very thankful. This is a great tribute to a great friend and as significant a post I've read in some time. God bless
Well written. While the time of year is a sad reminder, you're fortunate to have had such a good friend and he's fortunate to have had a friend like you write such a tribute. Thank you for taking the time to share that with us.
Yes, am amazing journey.. thx
Great read ... TY
From: Empty Freezer
Friendship is an amazing thing. I was just telling my boys that having good friends is very rewarding, alot of work, like a marriage kind of, without all the honeydo's. You have honored your friend with some very kind words and it makes me feel good reading it. I hope you find peace. Thank You
I only hope that when I'm gone someone will think of me in the same manner. You're a great friend !
From: Ron Niziolek
Well done Randy. Hope this message makes a lot of us never take anything or anyone for granted. Wish I’d have had the chance to know Ron. He had a damn good friend.
Randy, that was a very passionate and well thought out tribute to a special friend. We are remembered by not what we've done, or the "things" we have, but by the friends (true friends) we have garnished along our journey ---- you sir, are truly a rich man!
Very well said! Having lost bowhuntig friend this last year - also too early, I couldn’t agree more!
Great message! Thanks for sharing.
From: altitude sick
I’m sorry you lost your friend. But also happy for you, that you were fortunate enough to have that relationship. I also lost a good friend just 11 months ago. He took me under his wing years ago and took me into his group of elk hunters. The group changed to all guys my age and younger but he was still out there,often for 30 days every fall. He developed brain cancer and died within 40 days. He was the kind of friend we all would love to have. A die hard bow hunter at 74 yrs old. He was one of those guys that never bragged about the trophies he had shot over the years. He killed a lot of big animals before compounds. And continued to hunt hard. He usually out worked guys half his age in the mountains. It leaves a big hole losing a close friend but the memories should help make you smile. And as others said. It’s those things not the animals we remember most. We built a stone monument to my friend during this years elk hunt.
Sorry for the lost of your friend. It's hard to see a good hunting friend go, just remember all the great times you had.
From: Charlie Rehor
It is quite telling how we change our mind set as we age and lose close friends and or family. Bow hunting with great people is as good as life gets. Press on, press on!!! God Bless the Archer!
Randy you are a lucky man to have had such a great friend. He would want you to go out and live your life to the fullest without him though, so make it count.
Randy, great tribute to Ron. He would appreciate it! And I appreciate having had the opportunity to share quite a few hunts with you guys. (That North Slope of the Brooks Range adventure is one none of us will ever forget.)
Thanks for posting this touching tribute. Kurt
I learned a long time ago we are not promised our next breath. Live life to the fullest and give God the glory.
Was nervous to post this on the internet. Thanks to friends that commented! Mostly glad that you guys I don’t know confirmed what a decent bunch of people you represent.
Very sorry I missed this earlier Randy, you were a good friend to Ron and he was a good friend to you. We are lucky to have such men in our lives and to share the outdoors with each other and the memories we make. Glad you got to live those experiences with Ron at your side for many years. God bless and may you find a few more adventures with Ron's memory at your side!
Great tribute Randy. Glad you have so many fond memories of Ron for which to reflect.
From: hawkeye in PA
Beautiful tribute, thanks for posting.
Touching tribute to your friend and sorry for your loss Randy. It does put things into perspective. Thanks for sharing your story. Sometimes it's good to get things like this out to help heal from the pain of your loss.
From: Mark Watkins
thanks for posting Randy. a very nice tribute to your friend and a great lesson for all of us!
Great message and well-written. Sorry to hear about your loss, but I'm happy you had the experience.
From: Walt K
I miss Ron everyday as well Randy. I always will. But his friendship, memories and adventures are priceless in my heart and now part of my soul. I'm glad you and I shared a couple of those adventures together with him over the years too. We're blood brothers now, though it seemed to always be me packing out your kills. :) ... And I'll always be proud Ron left a legacy ... Predator Bows.
Wow what a great tribute! There's no doubt that a great friend is hard to come by. I'm skeptical that anyone will remember me as fondly as you remember Ron, but I certainly will continue to try. I have some great friends and I admire them much like you did your friend, Randy. What a great post and a truly touching tribute!
I know neither of you but that was an awesome tribute. You have many fond memories to be very thankful for.