My good friend Rod Bensley of Burnett “Beaver Dam area” told me back in early June, 2021, that he had rectal and prostate cancer and would probably die by September. Rod owned and managed Roosters Run pheasant preserve and did an excellent job of managing it, as well the 212 acres of land that his wife Wendy Vick and him owned.

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Selina Walters, Ruby and Rod Bensley enjoying a pheasant in 2020. (Contributed photo)

I decided on the day that I found out about Rod’s future that I was going to be the best friend that I could be to him in the last months of life. In July of 2021, Rod gave me his Ravin R 29 crossbow as he was sure that he would not see that falls bow season. In September, Rod was still alive, and I returned the crossbow and he harvested a buck with it and was told he would “maybe” make it until December. In December I muzzleloader hunted on his property and Rod was still very much alive as I was also there for the first day of the doe season and I watched him shoot two antler-less deer. I left his home with the Ravin 29 as he was sure he would be gone by March. This past August I returned the Ravin as Rod refused to die and was tough as ever and our friendship had really grown to a very mutual admiration.

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This type of country is difficult to travel on foot.(Contributed photo)

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