Grandma’s Gun

Kenn Blanchard tells a story of a shotgun his grandmother kept behind her wood stove. He says it saved his life. In his story he tells of a day in the past when guns were not locked up to keep the kids away from them. Instead the kids treated them with respect.

The mother of seven, grandmother of twenty-three, and great grandmother kept a loaded and unlocked no name shotgun behind the wood stove in the kitchen all of my life. The shotgun was dark rusty brown from barrel to butt stock.

Grandma’s shotgun only moved away from behind the stove a few times that I can remember. It moved annually every New Year’s Day when she celebrated the Emancipation Proclamation at midnight. Then she fired it twice after hollering “Happy New Year” into the dark cold night. We laughed every year as she pruned the large pine tree next to the house with birdshot. A huge lichen covered branch always came crashing down afterwards that added to the sound.

I noticed her gun had moved the night an angry drunken step father came to take his family home. We didn’t move that night but he did. We heard the dialogue, heard my grandmothers southern diplomacy dripping with sweetness, backed up by the unknown fact that she had a shotgun on the other side of the screen door with her.

And the shotgun moved the time she shot a water moccasin that was coiled to strike me, near the grapevine, at the mouth of the swamp where I loved to play.

Grandmas’ shotgun was like the sharpened ax that sat at the ready on the stump next to the pile of wood in the backyard of her home. We didn’t touch either of them without asking my grandparents for permission. You can still teach responsibility, honor, love and respect to your family. You don’t need the government to do that for you. I am proof of this. I have done the same in my home with my children.”

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3 Responses to Grandma’s Gun

  1. notamobster says:

    Good story. We need more of this type of story. The conversation has been dominated by talk of violence, murder, and and most-insidiously – control – for far too long. I’m so encouraged when I see people taking the conversation back from the liberals.

    We need to define our issues, on our terms.

    None of my weapons are locked up. Same-same with the ammo.

    My children have been taught gun safety from a young age, encouraged to be curious about firearms, and most-importantly to always maintain a reverential fear (respect) for any implement of death.

    A firearm is a tool. It is a mere mechanical advantage, but that advantage will kill anything you point it at. Every single time.

  2. rj says:

    Hell I was raised with loaded guns around, cut my teeth on a gunstock and can shoot anything that goes bang.

    Pap used to give me 5 .22 L/R and his old single rifle I’d better have a squirrel, rabbit, or groundhog for each round missing at the end of the day or a really good reason for missing the victim, one shot one kill means what it says.

  3. BigJimTX says:

    I had never seen a gun safe growing up. I knew where my dad’s guns were; all of them. I never touched them even as curious as I could get, I never touched them without permission. We were taught to respect our parents, their wishes, our elders, and tools – from knives to saws to guns. There was also that fear of death or belt – or death by belt. That might have made a difference.

    I don’t have kids yet, but I hope that the way I was raised is still an option.