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Savannah Quinonez, above, and Aiden Quinonez, below right, two members of the Eddy County Shooting Range Association’s youth archery program, are among the youth who will be affected by the recent theft of the ECSRA’s archery equipment. This is the second time in three years archery equipment has been stolen. (Photos Courtesy Kathy Kolt)

It’s happened again.

The Eddy County Shooting Range Association’s archery division has been robbed. All of our bows have been stolen. The police have been contacted. We took our recovered trailer, the last time it was stolen, and removed all the tires. It is still there, but empty.

We had spent quite a bit of money buying a 60-foot shipping container and placed it out at the archery range. It was so hard to open, I had to have help. Both containers were locked. The locks were broken, and the bows and arrows were stolen.

This is especially hard on the folks who were working with kids. We have in the past worked with single moms, raising kids alone. We have worked with Big Brothers Big Sisters. When Stacy Heacox of BBBS tells me, “This youngster is a little hyper,” my response is always the same: “Take them out to the archery range, let them look for arrows.” Even when the weather is bad, you can take a young person out to the archery range and say, “We’re going to look for rabbits.” The young people loved having different targets to shoot at. “Now let’s go shoot the bear.” I have always been amazed at how quickly young folks pick up archery. Perfect form and hitting the target are the norm.

Who steals from kids? People on meth. I had a washer and dryer stolen a month ago from a rental. I was told the drug dealer lives a couple doors down. The same day I heard about our robbery, a buddy posted online that saddles were being stolen. We have a drug epidemic, in spite of the fact that teachers are constantly harping at kids to stay off drugs. I’m not going to give up. I do feel like I’m banging my head against a wall, however. I work with kids who have a parent in jail, and I’m being robbed by someone who needs to be in jail. We have to break the cycle.

If you have any information, or ideas about where this archery equipment went, please contact me at 425-221-7700.