Part 4


Hunting is a tradition for a family in Roca, Nebraska, who have embraced safe gun ownership for generations.


Eric Dinger, Founder, Powderhook Outdoorsmen App:

“What else can we do to be safe with a gun?”


“Whenever you are not shooting something, then you have to have the safety on.”

Eric Dinger:

“Safety, yup. So, there’s a lot of ways to be safe with a gun. Number one, if it’s not loaded, it can’t shoot. Makes sense?

“I know the reality. I know the fact that if there is a gun 
accessible to a child, they could absolutely use that for a purpose that’s not intended. But we are teaching our children and we have made the calculated risk to have guns in our home and to have our children exposed to guns in a way that makes us 
feel like they know what they’re meant for and that they would only ever use them safely.

“I own guns because they are tools that I use to hunt.

“Hunting is just, kind of been a part of our lives as long back as I can remember.

 My earliest memories with Dad are outdoors.
 First time I can remember going was probably, shoot, I was probably eight, walking around, chasing pheasants with Dad and his friends but I would get to carry my BB gun and shoot at the pheasants.”

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Don Dinger, Field sales representative

“Tradition of hunting in our family actually started with my grandpa. He was a farmer taking my dad when he was a young boy. 
This one here is a Model 12 that my dad used. It was 1951 when it was made. 
So, it’s old and it’s a keepsake that he passed to me which I’ll pass to Eric.”

Eric Dinger:

“How about today?”

Don Dinger:

“How about today? I guess it’s not hurting anything. They are safe locked.

 It’s been a fun family tradition and I just hope it keeps going. 

“See ya. Bye, kiddo.


Eric Dinger:

“We’re going down to my wife’s family’s place down by Fairbury, Nebraska. And today is the second Saturday of the Nebraska rifle deer season. And so, we’re going to go and try and find a deer 
for my wife on her family’s ground.”

Stephanie Dinger, Commercial banker

“Kids right now have used their BB guns for a couple of years. They will legally be able to hunt when they’re 12. I didn’t have that opportunity when I was younger and as an adult learner, while I love it now, it was intimidating to get into it and to learn as a grown adult.”

Eric Dinger:

“The first time I taught Stephanie how to use a gun, we were in a turkey blind and, somehow, magically this beautiful tom 
turkey, still to this day the biggest turkey I have ever seen, came and stood at about 10 yards [9 meters]. And Stephanie had never shot and she had my shotgun and she was shaking so bad and so excited because the 
turkey would gobble at us. And so, she got the gun 
shouldered and shot and then set the gun down and said, 
‘Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God.’ Not exactly those words, let me tell you. Much, much more explicit than that.”

Stephanie Dinger:

“Yeah. Drop. But it was pretty cool.

 I think it’s really neat, specifically that my daughter has an
 interest in hunting. I will fully embrace and celebrate when she’s ready to go out 
on her own with a gun and have her first solo hunting trip.”

Eric Dinger:

“When a deer comes, you just need to move very, very little. Very little.”

Stephanie Dinger:

“Got to watch some birds but we saw no deer, no doe, no bucks. Right eye.”

Eric Dinger:

“Can you see how far away things are? Push this button up here.”

Stephanie Dinger:

“But we still had fun and that’s the neat thing about being together as a family, is the kids were with us. They got to experience and listen and just see the beauty of 

Eric Dinger:

“What hunting means to me is, it’s a tie to the people who raised me, the traditions they taught me, the places I’m from, that I have been. And you can mash all that up and say, hunting in my family 
is great shared experiences that are going to inform the way our 
kids see the world growing up.

“Neither Stephanie nor I shot a deer this weekend but our 
friends did.

“Yeah, see that right there. They’re pointy still. So, that deer right there, is probably one-and-a-half. 

“We had deer camp this weekend at our house and what that means is that everybody’s welcome to come 

“If you shoot a deer, we’re going to bring it back and we’re going to make meat together. 
All right, fresh deer tenderloin.

“We’re confirmed that’s empty, yeah? I’m so sticky about that. 

You know how many times he yelled at me as a kid? 
Don’t you point that gun…” 

Don Dinger:

“I do that to everybody that I teach how to hunt.”

Stephanie Dinger:

“It was a housewarming gift which was a unique gift.
 It was just kind of odd that it just showed up in our kitchen.” 

Eric Dinger:

“Frankly, I’m not as comfortable around pistols in social 
situations, especially, you know, a new one that nobody 
knows about. So that’s why I was squeamish with it.
 I don’t own a pistol. She owns the only handgun in the house and that’s because I don’t really go shooting. I go hunting and you don’t really hunt with a pistol.

“I think it’s important for people to separate the gun debate 
from hunting. Hunting is a way of life or avocation or sport. 

What frustrates lawful gun owners is that we get lumped into this heap in the media with people who are breaking the law. 
You know, somehow because we own guns, we are complicit in those things happening. 

“A good way for me to describe how I feel about guns is, the gun my dad is holding and this gun right here, are the two things I want in the will. I don’t want anything 
else from my dad other than his gun. And it’s not because I am this giant Second Amendment [gun rights] advocate.

“It’s not because I think that all guns should be legal and then we should just 
have no gun laws or regulations. But it’s because these are the things that have tied us generationally together.

 Gun conversation that has me caught up is the suicide conversation. If someone wanted to hurt themselves with the tools in our home, they could do that, whether that was with pills or with guns or whatever it may be. It just so happens that guns are the most lethal way to do that. And so, that part of it is the only part that gives me 
And frankly as a gun owner, I don’t know what to do about the fact that people use guns to kill themselves.

“Where the gun debate bothers me, as a hunter, is when 
we’re teaching people that guns are dangerous or that guns are 
something that you should fear to the extent that that becomes the way our culture thinks instead of teaching them to respect them and to teach them how to lawfully use them. And it makes it hard to imagine a world in which hunters are as common as they used to be.”