A collegiate All American in the 1940s, Mr. Fred Cole is now 88 years old and still a Camp Perry competitor. At Thursday night's NRA Awards Ceremony, where smallbore prone champions were awarded their medals, Match Director HQ Moody was excited to introduce him to the audience before the official ceremony began.
“He’s been our senior perennial champion forever,” Moody said, “and he’s one of our sport's fine gentleman.” As Cole stood and waved at the audience, the entire auditorium joined him with a thundering standing ovation.
Cole competed in both the 2010 smallbore 3-position competition and the smallbore prone competition. He ended the week with a comprehensive score of 4714-216x. Cole's pictured at left shooting in the prone position from 100 yards.
"I started shooting in 1937 at Xavier High School Rifle Team," Cole told NRAblog. "That's 73 years of shooting."
"I shoot mostly smallbore position. That's my first love."
The Stonybrook, New York, resident reports winning a total of 6 intermediate senior champions throughout his Camp Perry career.
Why has he devoted so much of his time to competitive shooting? "It's the greatest sport in the world," Cole proclaimed. "It's a character builder. It demands personal discipline."
"It's a challenging sport, and one can participate individually or as a team member."