Dog accidentally shoots ex-LSU lineman in Mississippi

Jose Verdugo
Enero 11, 2019

"At approximately 9:40 a.m., David Joe, David, Matt and I were all standing around the bed of the (Polaris) Ranger and Matt had laid his gun down flat in the bed of the Ranger and walked around on the passenger side to finish loading up", Heckford said.

A former LSU offensive lineman had his leg amputated after he was shot in a hunting accident. Everybody was pumped up.

Branch's friend, Micah Heckford, was with Branch on the trip and told the Mississippi Clarion Ledger the incident raised reasons to rethink gun safety. 'Everybody looked up. The first thing I saw was Matt and within two to three seconds he realized he was hit.

The bullet shot through the bed of the vehicle and struck Branch's left thigh.

The hunters called 911 and Heckford applied pressure to the wound to try and slow the bleeding while Branch was moved in a UTV to a road where they waited for first-responders.

Heckford, for his part, is now rethinking gun safety after the startling shooting. 'We think we're being safe, but are we?

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A former LSU offensive lineman and father to a 1-year-old son, Branch-in stable condition at a Jackson hospital-has since undergone "multiple critical surgeries including the partial amputation of his left leg and re-connecting his femoral artery in his left upper leg", Heckford writes in a viral Facebook post, meant to remind even the most experienced hunters about the importance of gun safety.

A GoFundMe page, noting that Branch has a wife and a 1-year-old son, has been set up to help him pay for his medical expenses.

The accident happened while Heckford, Branch and other members of their group, including Branch's younger brother, were reconvening after spending the early morning hunting in a spread-out formation.

Reached Wednesday afternoon by phone, Heckford said he and his hunting buddies hold no ill-will toward the dog, which seemingly understood that "something went wrong", he said. "I think that he knew something went wrong, but he was just as frightened by the shot as we were. The dog did as it was told".

Ready to join his human friends on the hunt, a Labrador retriever named Tito jumped onto the bed of the truck.

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