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very tragic, but 100% avoidable. see below



ISLE OF WIGHT

A Smithfield teen shot and killed himself today as he was about to go hunting with a friend.

Patrick Elito Edwards, 17, grabbed a 12-gauge shotgun by the barrel as he was getting out of his pickup truck around 9:45 a.m., Sheriff Charlie Phelps told WVEC.com. Edwards was struck in the face.

The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries is calling the incident an accident, said Julia Dixon, a spokeswoman.

Dixon said conservation officers are investigating the shooting. She would not release the name of the victim because of his age.

Isle of Wight investigators told WVEC.com that Edwards and his friend had driven into the woods across from his Moonlight Road home to look for a deer they had seen a few days ago. His brother, Albert, told WVEC.com that Patrick Edwards was not a hunting or shooting novice.
 

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I saw this on the news last night. This is a terrible loss of a 17 year old kid and my heart goes out to his family and friends.

I was talking to my nephew the other day about deer hunting and he said most of the guys he knows and hunts with rarely unload their guns after hunting. Why would anyone keep a loaded shotgun in a vehicle? It is an awful way for people to get a lesson on firearm safety.

Hopefully, this loss will be a wakeup call to the guys riding around with their guns loaded in their trucks.
 

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As I said after my hunting accident... let's all just hope that this incident may prevent another one from happening. That's the only good that can come out of any of it.
 

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I have had two accidental discharges. One was with a jammed 16 guage shotgun while shooting clays. The other was while I was loading a 30-30. I Loaded the kgun and the hammer caught my suspenders and pulled the hammer back almost enough not lock it in fire but not enough. When it let loose the gun fired. Thank god I was controlling the barrell. Gun accidents are very unfortunate but they do drive in the importance of gun safety.
 

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It is sad that someone did not drill into this poor kid safety comes first and foremost when it come

It is sad that someone did not drill into this kid that safey was first and foremost when it comes to any kind of hunting. It may have saved a life in this case if the kid would have known better, what a heck of a way to learn with the loss of life. I have seen others that needed someone to set them straight on safety and did my part when I felt needed. My heart goes out to his family.
 

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Daily Press Article 1/1/09

Fierce spirit helped teen overcome disability
The Smithfield High School junior, who had cerebral palsy, died when his gun accidentally went off while hunting deer.
By Allison T. Williams | 247-4535
January 1, 2009
ISLE OF WIGHT - No one ever bothered telling Patrick Elido Edwards that he was disabled.

But from the moment the dark-haired, 3-year-old child and his three older siblings burst into Nelson and Aileen Edwards' lives 14 years ago, Patrick - or Lido, as he was known to family and friends - had a fierce independent streak that helped him conquer physical challenges.

The Smithfield High School junior, who died when his gun accidentally went off while deer hunting Monday morning, had cerebral palsy.

When he came to the Edwards' as a foster child in the late 1990s, the toddler's tiny right foot remained at a point - as if he were walking on tip toes - all the time. And he could barely move his right arm or wave the fingers on his right hand, all the result of brain injuries developed after his birth mother was injured in a car accident while carrying Lido.

After having two children of their own, Nelson and his late wife adopted eight children - three sets of siblings, all from troubled homes - and cared for more than 65 foster children over four decades. Lido, who was 17, was the youngest of the family's adopted clan.

"Anything in life that could be done with two hands, he managed to do it with one," said Nelson Edwards, who faithfully carried Lido to physical therapy in Norfolk once a week for years.

Edwards still chuckles when he remembers how the therapist calmly told him she was going to begin teaching Lido basic skills.

"When she asked him if he could button his shirt, he grabbed the shirt in his teeth and used his left hand to maneuver the buttons," Edwards said. "He already knew how to do it."

Over the years, Lido grew up roaming the family's farm off Moonlight Road. He joined 4-H when he was 5 and was still active in the organization when he died.

He and his oldest brother, Mark Edwards, had a prize-winning herd of goats. The teenager usually got up at 5:30 a.m. on school days to help milk the 40-plus goats before heading to class. Lido also developed the Edwards' special gift for breaking wild mustangs, a thriving passion in his family.

Like most kids growing up in the country, Lido was raised hunting and fishing. He first began going with Nelson or his older brothers on hunting jaunts when he was about 4.

"He loved it," said Edwards. "He'd go outside in the field and hunt for 45 minutes, an hour, then come back inside and play his Gameboy for awhile, and then go back out and hunt some more.

"He loved standing out at Tyler's Beach with his line in the water. He didn't care whether he was catching anything or not, just so he was fishing."

Lido's love for the great outdoors and the family farm made the painful, untimely decision about what to do with his remains easy, said Nelson. His brother, John, made the call to spread his ashes on the farm.

"John said that when he goes hunting and fishing out here, he wants to know Lido is with him," Nelson said. "So that's what we are going to do."
 

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My county King William you are allowed to carry a loaded firearm in your vehicle on state roads. When you are hunting you must be 100 yrds from the road. Still no excuse for this type of accident.
LBubba
Yea, it's legal in most places understand the right conditions, with that said it's was more of a child not knowing then it was a gun thing.
 

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I made my 9 year old son read this post to me yesturday. Constantly drilling him about checking his BB Gun when it comes out of the safe, when it comes out of the truck, when we leave the blind, before it goes back into the case and before it goes back into the safe. This sad story brought understand of why it is so important. Stories like these scare me to death, but hunting is a huge part of my life and hopefully be a huge part of my sons. I dont want to loose him or a friend of his to stupidity or carelessness.

I just dont understand the reasoning behind carrying a loaded gun in your truck and I am sure this boys parents dont understand either. There is no "right condition". My heart goes out to them.
 

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As much of a shame as it is, and I pray every day that I never have to bury one of my kids. My kids have been told repeatedly you never point the muzzle at anything you don't plan on killing. It's just common sense. That being said,

I almost learned the hard 20 years ago when I was a dumb 20 year old, and grabbed my shotgun by the trigger as I picked it up from a fall. The safety was off and I blew an 8" hole in the ground about 1' from my left foot. Had it hit my foot, I may have bled to death before I got off the mountain.

My grandfather once told me when I was young that "Accidents don't happen, they're caused".

God bless his family.

Chris
 

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A gun is just like a pencil........lead at one end and rubber at the other end. Make a mistake with a pencil and turn it around to erase it with the other end..............It won't work the same way with a gun. It's also strange that an " unloaded gun" can kill some one. I hope I never have to wittness a gun accident...................Gary
 

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The gun was not the killer in this case but rather a mistake by the teen. It's sad it cost him his life but most accidents don't and most of us don't hear much about the ones that don't take a life or limb but the folks that have the lesser sure learn a leason of a life time.
 
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