Ranchers in the Great Plains endure a ceaseless battle against two nuisance animals: the coyote and the prairie dog. The predator coyote is a threat to their livestock, and the prairie dogs’ tunneling damages the land and causes harm to unfortunate horses and cows, which might step into a hole and be injured.
We have found that farmers in the Midwest welcome any hunters who want to help, and combat veterans, with their proclivity for shooting, are more than happy to offer assistance. Using this plight as an excuse to show service members a good time, Freedom Alliance has brought ranchers and former soldiers together for the cause.
Most recently, we met with Gary Guagenti and Duke Phillips at Chico Basin, a ranch in Colorado Springs. Gary and Duke welcomed Bradley and Rodger, both Calvary Scouts, and Dave and Scott, who served on a Special Forces freefall team together.
All are medically retired from the Armed Services, except for Bradley, who is a liaison for Fort Carson’s 4th Infantry Division and charities that aim to support service members. He will be a significant connection for Freedom Alliance, as we seek to form relationships with other active-duty troops.
After 10 years in the Army, Rodger is now pursuing a business degree. He also hunts coyotes and bobcats and sells the pelts to help support his five children. Dave spent many years in Special Operations as a non-commissioned officer and is currently transitioning into civilian life. Scott is getting licensed to manufacture firearms, and he one day wishes to donate rifles for Freedom Alliance to raffle off.
The fellows took one coyote and put a decent dent in the prairie dog population at Chico Basin. Gary and Duke were delighted to host the four soldiers and they in turn were happy to have helped.