MINNETONKA, MN (June 30, 2016) — Sixteen-year-old Kelly Blonigen was diagnosed with Friedreich’s Ataxia, a rare genetic disorder that will progressively worsen and take away her ability to walk among other things. An avid outdoorswoman, Blonigen’s biggest wish is to hunt with Winchester Deadly Passion’s Melissa Bachman. With the help of the wish-granting organization, Wishes & More, Bachman and the support of her family and friends, Kelly’s wish becomes a reality. Tune in to Winchester Deadly Passion, on Sportsman Channel Sunday, July 3 at 11:30 a.m. ET for this amazing whitetail hunt where more than just wishes came true.
Illinois’ famed Golden Triangle Whitetail – one of Bachman’s favorite hunting locations – happens to be at the top of Blonigen’s wish list of places to hunt. Bachman heads down first during the pre-rut to see if she can score her own big buck. But the bucks seem to be nocturnal and are not cooperating with Bachman’s best efforts. “I was trying everything I had, putting in my time from dark to dark on the stand, but it was not working,” said Bachman. “I could see these monster bucks on my Cuddeback cameras coming in at night, but they just weren’t moving much during the day. Hopefully as the rut gets closer, Kelly will have better luck than me.”
Bachman invites Blonigen and her father down for a second time to Illinois. Kelly was there last fall, but was unable to get her arrow sighted in on a buck. This year, as the hunt continues, Blonigen and Bachman soon learn it is not as much about the harvest as it is about the lasting memories and unbreakable friendship they have created.
Of all the hunts that I’ve done, the number one thing I remember is that it’s not the number of animals I’ve taken, it’s the not size of them, it’s the people I was with,” explained Bachman. “There has never been a better hunt that I have done than hunting with Kelly. Being next to her and seeing that joy and excitement and being able to help her dream become a reality; to me that’s what it’s all about. I’ve created a friendship that’ll last a lifetime.
This week’s Memory Chase video is Reese Helm, a 6-year-old from Leander, Texas, hunting her first big buck near her home. Reese received a Mission Vertical bow, Winchester Range bag, Hunter Safety System Vest, Ani-Logics Braggin Rights Attractant, Wildlife Research Center Gold Scent Elimination Pack, Easton Youth Bow Case, Boss Buck Feeders swag, Engel Cooler dry box, Rage Broadheads, Realtree EZ Hanger, Field & Stream backpack, Caldwell Hearing Protection and Moose Utility Division swag for being selected. Submit youth videos for Memory Chase at http://memorychase.com
About Winchester Deadly Passion: Every good hunter needs a solid role model, and Melissa Bachman, host of Winchester Deadly Passion, fits that bill perfectly with a unique ability to share her love for hunting with passionate fans and viewers. Winchester Deadly Passion is 26 weeks of non-stop action and pure entertainment as Melissa travels the globe going head-to-head with everything from world-class red stag and thousand pound gators to Boone and Crocket whitetails and thunderous bull elk. With rifle, bow or shotgun in hand, Melissa’s fast-paced, in-the-moment hunting style will keep you on the edge of your seat, while her expertise and decades of experience give viewers useful tips and strategies they can use afield.
About Winchester Ammunition
The iconic Winchester brand celebrates 150 years of legendary excellence in 2016—a historic milestone representing a steadfast commitment to the hunting and shooting sports traditions and future generations of sportsmen. A world leader in delivering innovative products, Winchester is The American Legend, a brand built on integrity, hard work and a deep focus on its loyal customers.