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Law Enforcement Appreciation Deer Hunt at Deux Cheneaux

The holiday season can be very busy for members of society working in law enforcement. Long hours during the Thanksgiving holiday can tax one’s spirit heading into the Christmas season. So the annual law enforcement appreciation hunt held the first weekend of December serves to provide a little rest and relaxation in the outdoors. A wide variety of federal, state and local people working throughout the justice system came to Deux Cheneaux Plantation in Green Pond to hunt, fish, eat and embrace some quality time on their day off.
The 2017 edition of the law enforcement appreciation deer hunt marks the fifth anniversary of this holiday tradition. Chad and Lori Beard initiated the idea for the hunt, and they partner with Allen and Susan Bell to provide the opportunity to deer hunt and to go fishing in a stocked pond. One member of the FBI that attended the hunt weekend said that the invitation to come to an outdoorsman’s paradise like this property in the ACE Basin is almost too good to be true.
“The roots for this event go back to when my husband was involved with the Grand American Coon Hunt in Orangeburg, when his family hosted a large gathering for friends and family,” said Lori Beard. “With Chad’s involvement in law enforcement the event transitioned into an appreciation for the folks he has worked with from sheriff deputies on up to federal judges. I get a little emotional when they return here each year to unplug for just a little bit with colleagues, friends and family.”
Guests arrive on Friday afternoon in time to get into deer stands for an evening hunt, and law enforcement officials are allowed to bring their children to hunt if they like. A 10-year old youth, Caleb Jones, shot his first ever deer during that Friday evening hunt, making the hunt a big success for all the participants in the field. A warm weather spell and a full moon phase seemed to have the deer moving only during the dead of night, so no other deer were harvested during the Saturday morning still hunt.
On Friday night the law enforcement guests are able to camp out and pitch a tent on the property if they want to sleep in the outdoors. Oysters and chili were served up around an open fire that night as stories from the hunt were shared. “Friday night was so much fun, with good company and good food, and we are so grateful for all the good work done by law enforcement,” said Susan Bell. Other family members involved in providing food and hospitality include Glen Bell, and Chad’s parents Frankie and W.R. Beard.
Janell McMillan works for SLED and resides in Columbia, but made time to come to this event for the third year in a row. “I like to sit at the fire with everyone else and listen to Chad’s stories,” said McMillan. “To see these people and this community coming together to spend their time and money on our well being makes us feel very appreciated. With the renewed focus on law enforcement in the media, this event helps to balance out some of that stuff.” McMillan is especially fond of Edisto Beach after her SLED detail was assigned to work the hurricane evacuation there earlier this year. “We arrived three days before and knocked on doors to explain the evacuation to residents,” said McMillan. “We stayed in hotel rooms in Walterboro during that time, and we worked on the island for three days after the storm passed. Mayor Jane Darby is sweet and Chief George Brothers was easy to work with. The Town of Edisto Beach fed us supper every night we worked at Edisto, so Lowcountry hospitality is strong in Colleton County.”
A few of the attendees wanted to relay their message of thanks in an anonymous fashion due to work constraints. They said that people in law enforcement aren’t making a lot of money, and that having access to a hunting property like this one is a great opportunity for them. Especially for those that don’t have much experience in the outdoors, this event pools the resources of the group so that everyone benefits. Some know more about hunting, some know more about fishing, and some come simply to eat and relax, but at its core it is a non-work event with a focus on raising spirits among the law enforcement family.

Jeff Dennis is a Lowcountry native. Read his blog at LowcountryOutdoors.com

Jeff Dennis, Contributor (359 Posts)

Jeff Dennis is a Lowcountry native. Read his blog at www.LowcountryOutdoors.com