Hunters in the 17th Annual Wounded Warrior and Mobility Impaired Wild Turkey Hunt gather post-hunt. Photo courtesy of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Hunters in the 17th Annual Wounded Warrior and Mobility Impaired Wild Turkey Hunt gather post-hunt. Photo courtesy of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

AIKEN, S.C. – The 17th Annual Wounded Warrior and Mobility Impaired Wild Turkey Hunt recently returned to Savannah River Site (SRS) after a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The Department of Energy is pleased to be able to hold these special events once again and glad to welcome back our Wounded Warriors and Mobility Impaired Hunters, some of whom would not have the opportunities to hunt that they have here at SRS,” said Tony Towns, the DOE-Savannah River program manager for natural resources.

Employees from the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) and SRS, and the event sponsor, National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF), were on hand for the return of the hunt. This year’s event included 15 participants selected by the federation. Hunters from Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Tennessee submitted applications to participate in the hunt.

"NWTF is proud to partner with the Forest Service and the Savannah River Site to offer members of the Wheelin’ Sportsmen program an opportunity to join fellow hunters for a memorable day of encouragement, hunting and fellowship surrounding the wild turkey land,” said Outreach and Educational Programs Coordinator Teresa Carroll. “The hunt escorts and other volunteers set aside their time to make this hunt a safe and successful hunt for all involved, and we could not do it without them."

Hunters were paired with SRS badged employees familiar with the site’s hunting areas. This helped ensure the safety of hunt participants as well as those working onsite. A total of seven turkeys were harvested.

“Pulling back on the curtain and allowing the public to see and experience the successful land management practices employed on Savannah River Site is just one of the benefits this hunt provides,” USFS Wildlife Biologist Thomas Mimms said. “We want each and every participant to leave the Savannah River Site with newfound friendships and fond memories that will last a lifetime.”

To learn more about Wounded Warrior and Mobility Impaired Hunts sponsored by the NWTF, click here. To learn more about upcoming hunting and fishing tournaments at SRS sponsored by the USFS and DOE, click here.