Corban grad shows anything is possible
November 18, 2010
Leland Ford has overcome a hunting accident and now bow hunts with his one good arm. (Mark Ylen/Democrat-Herald)
Thousands of Oregon hunters will bag a deer this fall.
But former Linn County resident Leland Ford is probably the only one to do so one-handed - with a bow and arrow.
It's an amazing feat by anyone's standards, but it's just a way of life for Ford, 58, who is now lives in Salem.
It's certainly not a lifestyle Ford dreamed about as a young man.
Ford was a captain in the Air Force ROTC program at Oregon State University with only one term left before graduation. He had completed flight school and was set on a career flying jets.
But on Dec. 8, 1974, fate intervened and his life changed forever.
"We were hunting on the Santiam River north of Lebanon when my dad's cousin's shotgun discharged and pellets struck the right side of my brain," Ford said.
Months of rehabilitation and healing followed. He has enough mobility in his left leg to walk slowly with the use of a brace, but he never regained use of his left arm. That hasn't stopped him from leading a full life.
"I have always loved being outdoors," Ford said. "I want to see what God has created and appreciate its beauty."
For more of this story, visit the Albany Democrat Herald.