Bad things happen to good people and amazing people take on the new challenges to overcome the bad events in their lives. These people become examples to us of the potential that each of us have. One such person is Porter Hancock. He enjoys sports and in his junior year at South Summit High School was on the football team. On October 7, 2011, during a game with Emery High School he was injured with a broken neck. Porter was paralyzed from the chest down. What a blow to a 15-year-old athletic young man. He has always had a positive mental attitude and took on the new challenges in his life.
Porter Hancock fulfills his passion for sports by being a member of the Salt Lake Scorpions Wheelchair Rugby Team. His passion for hunting recently achieved a goal of a successful exotic Corsican Ram Sheep hunt. This was facilitated by the Chairbound Sportsman Association of Utah. Kenneth Vaughn of Springville, whose own son is paralyzed, is enthusiastic and committed to helping people with physical limitations do the things they enjoyed doing in the past. The ram sheep hunt presented a new challenge and opportunity for Porter Hancock.
The Corsican Sheep were imported from Europe almost 50 years ago for game ranch hunting. They are considered an exotic animal and are bred and raised on private land by ranchers to be hunted. Dave Shepherd owner of the Water Hollow Ranch near Levan, Utah has a herd that he schedules for a limited number of hunts. The Chairbound Sportsman Association was scheduled to hunt two Corsican Ram Sheep on December 30, 2017. The second hunt was for an Air Force medically retired serviceman.
With Dave Shepherd and his two sons as the hunting guides, and the Chairbound Sportsman group in two ATV’s plus Porter in an Action Trackchair, the group headed up the mountain. The Trackchair, while not fast, offered great mobility. It is like a one-man Jeep and it is quiet. Top speed is about 5 mph or about the same as a brisk walk for a person. The group got several glimpses of the sheep that were somewhat difficult to see amongst the trees and brush. When you did see them they would disappear the next moment in a ravine. The challenge of the hunt went on for about an hour and a half before Porter was able to get off the shot that he wanted. He got himself a beautiful Ram Sheep with the classic curled horn that will look beautiful mounted. He was very excited as were the others in the group.
Porter Hancock is an amazing man to meet the challenges he had to face October 7, 2011. It is a wonderful experience to see someone not just making do with what they have with a paralyzed body, but doing more than most people do with a totally functional body. Porter got married last year and will be graduating this year from UVU with a Bachelors Degree in Communications. He wants to go on and get a Masters Degree in Health Services Administration. In addition to that, we will probably find him out hunting again and living life to the fullest. That is Porter Hancock who looks at life as a blessing and is a blessing to all of us.
If you know of someone with a physical handicap that would benefit from the interests and activities of the Chairbound Sportsman Association visit their website at www.chairboundsportsman.org or on Facebook at Chairbound Sportsman. They can also use your tax-deductable donation to help fund the outdoor events they schedule for the wheelchair sportsman and disabled/wounded veterans. For more information and donations call Kenneth Vaughn at 801-499-9770.