By Michael Deming
In December of 2013, a young lady by the name of Camille Bomboy was attacked by a female black bear with cubs while she was hunting with her family in Pennsylvania. This was a routine hunt on her family’s land which she had participated in for years. A portion of her group was doing a drive while she was on point as a shooter. She looked up to see several small black bear cubs run by her looking to get away from the drivers. When Camille looked back up to where the cubs had come from, there was one angry momma bear headed her direction. Before she had time to react, the bear was on her and sinking her teeth into her flesh. The ordeal only lasted a short period of time, but was a life changing experience. She was rushed to the hospital with numerous puncture wounds and an ear that was nearly severed. Although scared, she survived the incident. This entire incident is extremely unfortunate, but all too possible for those of us that head into bear country to enjoy our heritage each and every year. What happened next is the most unfortunate part of the entire incident. While recovering, she was attacked once again. This time from the anti-hunting organization P.E.T.A. (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals). The attack from this organization was extremely insensitive to this young girl and her family and very offensive to the majority of outdoorsmen and women who know that this sow black bear was just defending her cubs. She didn’t have it coming and didn’t deserve this attack just because she was hunting. The offensiveness of this attack made it to the center stage of several national news organizations which is how we heard about it. Gretchen Carlson on Fox News was more than a little annoyed with the P.E.T.A outreach on this young girl. (interviews can be seen on YouTube).
It offended one of our endorsed outfitters even more. Itcha Mountain Outfitters out of British Columbia make their living from hunting and black bears is one of the primary animals they pursue. Sabrina Frazer (co-owner of Itcha Mountain Outfitters) was outraged and informed me that she would do whatever it takes to make sure this young lady had the tools to fight back against this senseless attack on her and her right to hunt. I spent the next two weeks reaching out to industry professionals trying to get Camille or one of her family members on the phone. Recovering from a bear attack and then a verbal attack had her laying low and being very cautious. We finally connected and I was able to hear her side of the story. This precious young lady is a true animal lover who had dedicated her life to farming, ranching, 4-H, and the betterment of animals. She has done more for the animals in her short life than any P.E.T.A member will ever do. She assured me that hunting was a part of her life and she would continue it for the rest of her life. The attack from P.E.T.A. made her want to speak out and show what she is made of.
In May of 2014, Stewart and Sabrina Frazer hosted Camille Bomboy and her father Casey for a black bear hunt in British Columbia. We at Sportsman’s News took care of getting her there and great supporters like Prois Hunt Gear for Women and Vortex Optics made sure she had the tools of the trade to get the job done.
During a week-long hunt with Camille and her father, we learned a lot about this young lady. She is very caring, soft spoken, and someone who truly didn’t deserve to be attacked by the pinheads at P.E.T.A. Getting between a sow and her cubs is something that could truly happen to any one of us who spend time in the woods. It is time that all of us hunters stand up to these organizations and show them who the true conservationists are. Our hunting and fishing license fees alone will contribute more to the animals in one year than this organization will in a century. I know we won’t ever change the extremist’s minds and I’m not concerned about doing this. The 85 percent of the people who don’t hunt and don’t have an opinion are the ones that need to know the true facts about what we and hunting do to benefit wildlife.
Yes, Camille harvested a great black bear during her hunt with Itcha Mountain Outfitters and that will be an upcoming story in Sportsman’s News Magazine, so please make sure to subscribe to a free copy of our digital edition. I took my 11 year old daughter Taylor on this hunt as well, and she was equally successful. These two young ladies had a great time and helped manage the black bear population to insure that it thrives for generations to come.