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Dodson promotes firearm safety ...
Dodson promotes firearm safety for all
You wouldn't let your child step into a car and drive without prior experience, John Dodson
says, so why would anyone want a youth picking up a gun without proper training?
Dodson, president of Cedar Mountain Youth shooting club, has been providing expert education on firearm safety for 20 years, teaching both youth and adults the proper respect for a weapon.
That service to the community prompted Dodson
to be recognized March 2 by the Culpeper County Board of Supervisors
with a Culpeper Colonels award.
"That one was a surprise," Dodson
said the group's classes focus on the basics of firearm safety - keeping the muzzle pointed in a safe direction, making sure not to put your finger on the trigger until you're ready to shoot, and making sure you know what is beyond your target.
"There's something about people that when they see a gun, they want to handle it," Dodson
"We want to make sure they know how to handle it safely."
After completing the safety courses, many of the youth have become interested in
target shooting, Dodson
The club has been active in hosting skeet, sporting clays and egg shoots as fundraisers.
"None of this would be possible without the good help from the great club members," Dodson
said, noting there are 31 members now.
The club also teaches classes and works closely with 4-H groups and Boy Scout troops.
"We're presently training the 4-H kids for their first competition," Dodson
Youth also host the Northwest Region competition in August at their range, land they are allowed to use by the Inskeep family of Battlepark Farm.
"By them letting us use their land, they make the club possible," Dodson
, 79, has lived in Culpeper
for most of his
life, except for the 10 years he
spent in the Air Force.
His love of hunting led him to become an instructor, and he has seen hunting grow more popular in the county.
seen some other changes as well.
"When I was a kid, you'd go a whole hunting season and not see a deer," he
said with a chuckle.
"Now you can't hardly drive down the road without seeing them.
That's good game management by the game department."
cites having a good relationship with the game department, which is probably a good thing considering his
son works for them.
and his wife, Lucy Ruth, also have a daughter and five grandchildren.
John W. Dodson: A hunter ...
John W. Dodson: A hunter education instructor volunteer for 21 years, Dodson has devoted his time to educating youth on safe and responsible hunting.
year Air Force veteran, Dodson is the president of Cedar Mountain Youths and shares his firearms knowledge with members of the 4-
StarExponent.com - The Culpeper Star Exponent | Learning lessons
"We encourage young people to do firearms safety training responsibly," said long-time president and club founder John Dodson."We've had kids from all over Culpeper and the surrounding counties participate.We offer classes for adults also."
Coming to fruitionDodson
said that the club was originally founded to get firearms safety to all the kids who were interested in firearms.
"And we conduct all the hunter safety classes in the area," added Hale who credits Dodson
with being the reason the club has remained afloat financially.
...Cedar Mountain Youths (CMY), Inc. was founded by Dodson in October of 1990.He served as the club's president for 12 or 13 years, though not successively.
After serving for the first 10 years, he
stepped aside and later returned.Dodson
has spent most of his
life in Culpeper
but now lives in Madison.With a diverse background that includes farm work, serving in the United States Air Force, then later joining the civil service, Dodson eventually owned a grocery store before starting CMY.
"We teach basic rifle, basic shotgun, and classes for archery and muzzle loader," he
, and the rest of the staff are indeed proud of the club's sponsorship.
"In today's society," added Dodson
, "more homes have guns than don't.
thinks of this event as preparation for bigger things."It's a trial for the state meet," he
said."It takes in counties that have shooting teams in the northern and northwest counties of Virginia."
With the event slated for next month, Dodson
exudes a quiet confidence.
"Hopefully, we'll do quite well," he
"Our kids have consistently placed first, second, and third both as a team and as individuals," said Dodson
"I think we have something that nobody else has," said Dodson
From left, Sandy Young, Patricia Bryson, ...
From left, Sandy Young, Patricia Bryson, John Dodson, Thomas Seay, John Coates and Howard Mills pose for photographs after being named Culpeper Colonels by the Culpeper County Board of Supervisors during its session Tuesday evening in the county administration building.
John W. Dodson
: A hunter education instructor volunteer for 21 years, Dodson
has devoted his
time to educating youth on safe and responsible hunting.
A 10-year Air Force veteran, Dodson is the president of Cedar Mountain Youths and shares his firearms knowledge with members of the 4-H and the Boy Scouts.
StarExponent.com - The Culpeper Star Exponent | Clubs and organizations
John Dodson, President