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tonb
01-08-2008, 1:23 PM
Dog steps on loaded shotgun, kills Baytown teacher

By CINDY HORSWELL
Copyright 2008 Houston Chronicle

In a freak hunting accident, a Baytown man was killed over the weekend when his dog stepped on his loaded shotgun, triggering a discharge that penetrated his truck's tailgate and then struck him, officials said.

Perry Alvin Price III was hunting on a lease near Stowell in Chambers County Saturday and had shot down a goose but had not seen where it landed, sheriff's investigators said.

The 46-year-old math teacher from Baytown's Robert E. Lee High School then put his shotgun in the back of his truck and was about to open the tailgate to release his tracking dog when the shotgun fired, investigators said. The blast struck Price in the thigh.

Price died from severe blood loss from his femoral artery shortly after arriving about 6:20 p.m. at Winnie Medical Center. Price's hunting companion and a former student, Daniel Groberg, said he tried to stop the bleeding with clothing before taking him from the hunting lease off FM 1941.

Paw prints from Price's beloved chocolate Labrador retriever, Arthur, were found on the muddy shotgun, said Chambers County Sheriff Joe LaRive.

"It's the strangest case that I've seen," LaRive said. "We couldn't talk to Perry and Groberg was at the front of the truck when he heard the shotgun blast and didn't see what happened."

Price's sister speculated that the dog was anxious to begin the pursuit.

"His dog was so excited," said Patricia Payne. "He was jumping all around, because he was about to get out and go get that goose.

"That gun had to be knocked around just right to fire. I believe the dog knocked the safety off and hit the trigger, too," she said. "Price was always so careful."

Since the shooting, the dog and Price's other pet, a golden retriever, Leon, have been looking lost and sad at his Baytown home where he lives with his wife, Kelli, and his two stepchildren, Payne said.

The dogs were "like children to him," his sister said. His classroom at Lee is also filled with photographs of his dogs which he used to get his students' attention, she said.

A teaching colleague, Melanie Turner, recalled how Price developed a special award this year that was indicative of his love for hunting. For students who exhibited extra perseverance and determination, he would hand out T-shirts naming them "Bird Dog of the Week."

"His loss will be felt for quite some time," Turner said.

Teachers in the Goose Creek district held a moment of silence in honor of Price on Monday. Counselors today saw students, who talked about grieving over the loss of their teacher.

Price had been a fixture on that campus for 20 years. He graduated from Texas A&M with a civil engineering degree but chose to dedicate his life to teaching instead, his sister said.

Teaching in Baytown has been a family tradition, as not only Price but also Payne and his other sister and brother-in-law, Nancy and Andy Jacobs, teach there.

"Price was a highly respected educator, whose wonderful rapport with students was key in helping them to understand and even joy mathematics," said Barbara Sultis, Baytown's superintendent.

"Everyone remembers him for his smile," said Kathy Clausen, the district's spokeswoman.

Teachers praised his ability to help the slower learners and remembered his love of hunting.

"I always enjoyed talking to him about the outdoors, especially about his wild hog trap and his taxidermy," said Calvin Jeffrey, another math teacher.

Sheriff LaRive said even experienced, safety-conscious hunters like Price must double check themselves when in the field.

LaRive said the safety should always be kept on any gun that is not immediately being fired and that a gun should be stored in a protected place with its barrel pointed away from people.

In October, a 37-year-old Tama, Iowa man was shot in the leg at close range by his dog, who stepped on his shotgun and tripped the trigger.

James Harris was hit in the calf on the opening day of pheasant season. The wound was not life-threatening.

Visitation for Price is scheduled for 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday at the Navarre Funeral Home in Baytown.

USN CHIEF
01-08-2008, 1:35 PM
This really sucks... I am glad that I don't have a dog:eek:

ohsmily
01-08-2008, 2:32 PM
This really sucks... I am glad that I don't have a dog:eek:

With that sort of logic, I guess you shouldn't have a shotgun either :eek:

USN CHIEF
01-08-2008, 2:35 PM
With that sort of logic, I guess you shouldn't have a shotgun either :eek:


As of right now I do not have a shotgun...:)

tamaneko
01-08-2008, 2:50 PM
Oh wow...Plague Dogs, anyone?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tp5mcc47xD8

ohsmily
01-08-2008, 2:54 PM
As of right now I do not have a shotgun...:)

Phew...then you're safe.

Gunaria
01-08-2008, 3:10 PM
This is why you should never have a loaded gun (handgun, rifle or shotgun) in your vehicle, on your vehicle, in the back of the truck, resting on the tires, on the hood or setting on the tailgate. ALWAYS EJECT THE SHELLS when placing the shotgun in or near the truck. So far I have seen back windows blown out and free sun roof installations and now a death has occured. Some people just have to learn the hard way. It is not the dog's fault it is the owner's.

Ironchef
01-08-2008, 3:10 PM
And people are afraid of pit bulls....

The SoCal Gunner
01-08-2008, 3:19 PM
Sad story. I wonder if he could have been saved if they put a tourniquet on his leg. Probably would have lost the leg but better than a life.

ViPER395
01-08-2008, 4:10 PM
I didn't think bird shot would go through a tailgate, even at that range.

This is why I don't take dogs shooting.

ohsmily
01-08-2008, 4:14 PM
This is why I don't take dogs shooting.

That is a bad reason.

You are more likely to be injured killed in many more ways other than having a dog accidentally discharge your firearm. As Gunaria said, you won't even have to worry about it if you practice safety and unchamber your gun when you leave it someplace.

ViPER395
01-08-2008, 4:18 PM
That is a bad reason.

You are more likely to be injured killed in many more ways other than having a dog accidentally discharge your firearm. As Gunaria said, you won't even have to worry about it if you practice safety and unchamber your gun when you leave it someplace.


It was a little dark humor. I always practice safe shooting techniques. My firearm is always unchambered and bolt locked back (usually empty) when I set it down. Besides. My dogs hate noise. They don't even like when I bring rifles out. Especially the black ones. They must be liberals.