Forgetting almost every rule of gun safety, she stood about thirty feet in front and to the right out of the field of fire and threw the skimmers up and away from her with the wind to the northeast. Her throwing arm is nothing like a mechanical skeet machine but her best was just fine. Gusting an easy35 mphfrom behind my back, the wind immediately caught the big shells and carried them erratically to the northeast away from us.
She doesn’t know why, but instead of throwing with the wind, she threw the last one southwest up into the wind. The shell didn’t go very high or very far and at the top of its arc it turned and came right back to her like a boomerang. I wasn’t watching the big picture but was narrowly focused on leading the skimmer to make the shot. I missed on the first pull of the trigger. And missed the second shot. Determined to hit with the third I swung the barrel down further and the instant I pulled the trigger I saw my wife standing in the field of fire. I’d never felt so sick so quick
I was already running to her when she slapped her right hand to the left side of her head, the smallest trickle of red seeping down from where one single pellet had grazed her just above the left ear. One inch to the left and a quarter inch down and it would have gone straight through her left eye.
Thirty five years later I still can’t think about it without feeling like I’ve been punched in the stomach. And that’s how I shot my wife.
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