Armed 11-year-old boy saves fishing party

An Alaskan boy armed with his trusty pump-action shotgun saved his family from a charging brown bear during a fishing trip last month.

The boy’s father, Lucas Clark, said it took his son, Elliot, four shots of birdshot to put down the sow, according to the Juneau Empire.

Elliot, who was 11 at the time but has since turned 12, was with his uncle, uncle’s dad, a cousin, and three dogs when they encountered the bear on their way to a fishing hole near Hoonah, about 40 miles – as the crow flies – west of Juneau, on June 18.

Clark said the group was walking through the woods, with Elliot third in line, when the bear came charging out. “The bear came down the trail at them, fella in the front, who was (Elliot’s) uncle, the bear was on him so quickly that he didn’t have time to take his rifle off his shoulder,” Clark said.

Having gone through the first two men, the bear turned its attention to Elliot and his unarmed cousin, but Elliot quickly raised his shotgun and fired.

“His first shot was a light load of birdshot. That first shot hit (the bear) in the shoulder and did absolutely nothing. The next shot hit ’em in the nose and traveled down through the neck,” Clark said.

The third shot hit the bear in the shoulder and back and caused it to drop to the ground and slide toward Elliot, Clark said, adding the third shot was so close that it left powder burns on the bear’s mouth. But the bear was still alive, so Elliot shot it one more time. And for safe measure, his uncle fired the final round, killing the bear.


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  • HDMania

    Good work son..

  • mousekiller

    so good to see a young person with a cool head in a hot situation.

  • Custom gun

    Being raised in Alaska it’s easy for me to relate to this story. I killed my first bear at age 12 with my Dads trusty Remington Model 721 30-06. My situation was a lot different than the one this young man experienced. My friend and I had gone to the local garbage dump to get rid of the weeks worth of garbage. When we arrived there were three Black Bears there scrounging around in the dump. It was an easy matter to shoot the biggest one of the bunch, bleed him, gut him and haul him home to be skinned and butchered. Because the Salmon hadn’t started running yet he had been feeding on berries and roots, and of course garbage. I remember he made a great addition to the supply of meat in the freezer, much like eating pork. This was 60 years ago, when Alaska was still a Territory.

    • jsmappy

      That’s Back when men were men & Women were just as tough. Good job!

  • ABBAsFernando

    Proves children well trained and experienced are fully capable of self defense! Liberal fascists be damned!

    • blackwingA520

      I live in a city of about 100,000 and when I was about 14/15 (back in 1972, good times!), I used to stay at this kids house overnight (Friday/Sat). They lived just outside the City limits and had an old grown up apple orchard next to their house with a lot of rabbits. My parents used to let me take my shotgun there and we hunted them. Could you imagine parents today letting their kids do that. Now they won’t even let them take a pellet gun outside.

  • Bama Bill

    I wonder what would have happened to some anti-gunner? Gee, this human tastes just like pig? Said the bear.

    • R.D.WYLIE

      Yeah but the bear might get a democrat and then the poor bear would get food poison and upchuck
      I new I got one of those anti-gunners those campers keep talking about!

    • Custom gun


      • Bama Bill

        Just curious, why Custom Gun? I’m a 73 yr old Navy veteran. Always used 30-06 with my own loads, and a 12 gauge semi auto. Looking for a rifled barrel for my WInchester 1400. Won trap league two years with it. Quit skeet cause I never missed, 2 easy.
        Have 4# of gunpowder to sell. Lost the farm, can’t use it in town.

        • Custom gun

          Hi Bill, I was laughing about your comment “gee this human tastes just like pig, said the bear” I myself am a 71 year old Navy retiree, 100% combat disabled Vietnam vet, and a gunsmith. I also did all my own reloading, have run 100 straight in all four gauges in Skeet, on Adak, the “Birthplace of the Winds”. Shot competitive rifle and pistol in the old 13th Naval District competition held here on Whidbey Island Washington in July of 1977. I remember shooting prone at 300 yards at the rifle range here on 7/7/77, and thinking that it was 80 degrees that day, and with luck Adak was maybe 45 degrees. I was fortunate enough to transfer from NAVCOMSTA Adak to NAS Whidbey Island. Retired here and made it our home. For the most part I have no regrets, just happy memories of a great career. Looking forward to many more.

          • Bama Bill

            Thanks for the response! U R welcome to chat via email billmiller at outdrs dot net. As a gunsmith, can you tell me why there is a difference between 30-06 and 308? Same bullet and barrel, only the case is different. That’s why I have always stayed with my ’06. Even use sabots to load .223 bullets, but cut velocity down to 2,500 fps. Just a little better projectile than my .22WMR, which I only have a 7 1/2″ barrreled revolver. An old H&R revolver.

          • Custom gun

            Bill, I’ve often wondered why have the .308 when the 30-06 is such a superb cartridge. The reason for both is because at the turn of the 20th century when the 30-06 was developed the available powders and loading components were rather primitive compared to what was available when the .308 was developed. It was found that comparable performance could be achieved in a shorter case, allowing for a shorter action, hence a less expensive action to manufacture. At first the difference in cost may seem insignificant, however when thousands and thousands of rifles are manufactured the saving add up. Bottom line, the .308 action is cheaper to produce, weighs less and gives comparable performance. I collect older break top .22 pistols and have two H&R break top revolvers in 100% condition. I paid a kings ransom for them but couldn’t be happier to have them. I also have several Iver Johnson break top revolvers in the same condition. All with blued finish. I will get in touch with you via your e-mail address in the future. My e-mail address is [email protected] don’t hesitate to get back in touch with me Bill, I’ve enjoyed our conversations.


    Great work by this lad! I’m sure any New Yorkers who read this will be horrified and call PETA to file a complaint. Remember, God didn’t make all men = or men and beasts =, Sam Colt did.

  • joeupyours

    who cries for the bear Argentine?

    • Custom gun


  • blackwingA520

    Ya might wanna carry some large buckshot and rifled slugs with you next time, juuuuuuuust in case.