Karlstad native Doug Thompson,72, hasn’t went bear hunting since 1993, successfully getting a bear on this hunt. Thompson has a shot at getting another bear, as part of a hunting opportunity for veterans.
Thompson talked briefly about his service to his country and also this hunting opportunity.
A 1966 Karlstad High School graduate, Thompson was drafted in March 1968 at the age of 19. A member of the United States Army, he served in the Vietnam War, there from August 1968 until October 1969— 14 months. In Vietnam, he served as part of the Infantry in the Central Highlands. For his service, he earned a Purple Heart.
“Then I was out of the military completely because I extended for 60 days,” Thompson said. “They called it an early out. So I actually only spent 19 months in the military altogether.”
To honor this local veteran, the Karlstad Bear Buster Outfitters, a group headed by Jonathon Pearson, is providing Thompson with this bear hunt and the Two Rivers Sportsmen’s Club is funding it. Thompson will be hunting for this bear by Twin Lakes, located four to five miles east of Karlstad.
Bringing his muzzleloader, he went out on his first day of this bear hunt on Thursday, September 10. Getting one bear tag, he didn’t get a bear on that first day, but this past Monday (September 14) he said he planned to hunt a couple more times this week. Pearson is allowing Thompson to hunt until he gets a bear.
Thompson served his country over 50 years ago, but now is just looking forward to the opportunity to relax and hunt for an animal he has not hunted in 27 years.
Asked if he’ll be relaxed when he sees a bear in his scope, Thompson said, “Well… that’s hard to say.”
No matter the outcome, he is thankful for the chance to do this, especially locally, expressing his appreciation to both the Two Rivers Sportsmen’s Club and the Karlstad Bear Buster Outfitters.
“From what they’ve told me, it sounds like it’s a good time,” Thompson said. “… It should be a blast.”
To see the complete story, read the September 17 issue of the North Star News in print or online.