Elliot Clark, an 11-year-old boy from Hoonah, Alaska, is not your typical 11-year-old boy. On a recent outing with family, a bear charged the group in an attacking manner. Clark quickly shot the bear dead and saved his family.
Clark was with three relatives and three dogs on a fishing trip recently when a brown bear raced out of the woods and charged the family. The bear caught the family completely off guard and managed to knock down other adults in the group and get on top of Clark’s uncle.
“There was four of them in a line…my so was third,” Clark’s father, Lucas Clark, told Juneau Empire. “The bear came down the trail at them, fella in the front, who was his uncle, the bear was on him so quickly that he didn’t have time to take his rifle off his shoulder.”
With the other family members knocked down or unarmed, Clark was the only person left with a weapon. He took his pump-action shotgun off his shoulder and fired at the bear.
Per the Juneau Empire:
The bear ran through the first two men, who were pushed to the side of the trail, leaving Elliot Clark in front of his unarmed cousin. The boy raised his pump action shotgun and shot the sow, hitting it with birdshot, which is often used just to scare bears off, Lucas Clark said.
“His first shot was a light load of birdshot. That first shot hit him in the shoulder and did absolutely nothing. The next shot hit him in the nose and traveled down through the neck,” Lucas Clark said.
The third shot went into the bear’s shoulder and his back, dropping it to the ground. The bear was so close when Elliot hit it with his third shot, there were powder burns on the bear’s mouth. Still alive, the bear then slid by Elliot’s feet.
“As the bear slid past him and came to a stop, he put a kill shot it him,” Lucas Clark said.
Stoltzfus finished it off with another round.
The bear was just a few feet from Clark when the young boy sprang into action, saving his family members.
Hoonah is a largely Tlingit community on Chichagof Island, located in Alaska’s panhandle in the southeast region of the state. It is 30 miles west of Juneau, across the Alaskan Inside Passage. It has a population of 734.