Outdoor Corner: Trevor Vampran, another St. Jude success story

Lyle Johnson
Trevor Vampran poses with the two deer that he and Trooper Chase Huval killed at Deep South Hunting Club in Alabama.

Our paths in life sometimes take us in places that weren’t planned or looked for. There are lots of unknowns and unexpected friendships and relationships, as well. The TV show Ascension Outdoors was one of those unexpected paths that I never imagined I’d ever travel on.

I’d crossed paths with my future brother-in-law, “Goosie” Guice, in my early 20’s while dating my future wife, Deborah Guice. We became great friends, and besides being in-laws we shared a passion for the outdoors, especially hunting and fishing.

That passion reconnected us with a mutual friend and fellow classmate, David Young, who at the time was the owner and executive producer of Ascension Parish TV, or APTV. David invited this unlikely pair to the news show he and Maxine Crump hosted, and the rest is history.

Ascension Outdoors TV started a few weeks after that thanks to David, and this journey has taken us in special places for sure for over 17 years. Our paths crossed with lots of videographers, editors, and associates that come and go due to nothing other than the way this business works. We’ve made lots of friends as well.

Our current editor is Nathan Catlin, and our “most of the time” videographer is Trevor Vampran. Nathan comes way of his helping out our previous editor when she got in a pinch. Trevor joined the team from a recommendation given to us from a neighbor and friend. Glad he did!

The first thing I heard about Trevor was that he was a St. Jude kid. That usually means that a bout with some kind of cancer had taken place, and his story is no different. At 14-and-a-half years old Trevor was diagnosed with AML leukemia. In March of 2008 he and his mom moved to Memphis at St Jude’s and lived there for 18 months.

Trevor did not respond to chemotherapy and go in remission so that required a bone marrow transplant. He managed to fight cancer and still graduate as a Gator with his class at St. Amant High school in 2011.

With many successes and setbacks along with eight surgeries under his belt, Trevor Vampran celebrated his 10th year of being cancer free in 2018. St. Jude covered all of his and his parents’ expenses except his last one on his knees. Trevor has more to come as they returned to Memphis on Tuesday for a checkup and more on their plan forward.

But it wasn’t pity for someone that had a bad break in life that interested us in Trevor or why we’ve tried to keep him on our team. After graduating from St. Amant he pursued his education at Southeastern in Hammond with communications as his major.

Trevor is a 2017 graduate with a bachelor’s degree in Communication form SLU. While at school working with the Southeastern Channel, Vampran videotaped and edited a variety of productions, including live sports game broadcasts, and award-winning “Northshore News,” “Big Game,” and “College Night,” segments.

His cinematography of his music video, “Drink a Beer” by country star Luke Bryan, won a 2016 Emmy Award in the Suncoast Region of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. So he came with a lot of street cred if you know what I mean.

There’s one thing I noticed about families that get exposure and help from St. Jude Children’s Hospital. They become leaders in the fight against cancer and give a helping hand to those that might come behind them.

Trevor got very involved with the Louisiana State Trooper Foundation and their efforts to help kids. His family served as a liaison in Memphis between the troopers and the St. Jude patients from Louisiana. Trevor recently spoke at a golf tournament fundraiser at the Greystone Country Club. The fundraiser raised money for “wishes” like his.

After participating in the 2018 Memphis Marathon Event, the Louisiana State Troopers granted his “wish” to kill his first deer. Trooper Chase Huval presented him with a certificate for a hunting trip that completely caught Trevor by surprise.

For all his paying it forward efforts at the Troop A Christmas party, they presented Trevor with a Model 700 ADL 270 bolt action rifle matched with a Vortex VIPER HS 2.5-10 X 44 rifle scope. Vortex Optics also donated a branded hat and two T-shirts.

I later learned how to mount the scope and sight it in with Trooper Pat Jackson. After two training sessions and two boxes of Remington Core-Lokts 130 grain I was ready for the deer stand, thanks to Trooper Jackson,” stated an excited Trevor Vampran.

The hunting trip was to Demopolis, Alabama at the Deep South Hunting Club from Monday, January 7 to Thursday, January 10. All the hard work that Troopers Huval and Jackson put in with Trevor paid off as he was able to kill his first deer last Wednesday.

There were three deer in the food plot when Trevor took his shot. To add a little icing on the cake Huval took another one out that didn’t run off after Trevor’s shot.

Trooper Chase Huval sat in the stand with me all but one time during the trip. We were able to tag two does from the same stand. January ninth, two-thousand, nineteen I’ll never forget the day I killed my first deer,” Vampran said. “The trip wasn’t just about the kill. I also enjoyed the short snoozes in the deer stand, the fellowship around the campfire, and the passing down of wisdom and tradition. Thank

you to everyone who helped make this amazing experience possible.”

A fitting reward for a great young man that is very grateful to the folks as St. Jude for all their help and a great bunch of Troop A State Troopers that spend their spare time helping other folks enjoy life. Remember to keep the slack out and set the hook hard. Have fun in the outdoors, be safe and may God truly bless you!

Lyle Johnson is a free-lance writer, co-host of Ascension Outdoors TV and Curator of the Louisiana State Fish Records. He can be contacted at reelman@eatel.net

Outdoor Calendar

EASL Monthly Meeting: 3rd Monday every month, East Ascension Sportsman’s League meeting held at Chef KD’s on Highway 74 starting at 7 p.m. A meal served and special speaker will be in attendance.

APSO Shooting Range: The rifle range on St. Landry Road is open to the public year-round on the second and fourth Thursday of each month from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., or safe shooting light.

Squirrel season: Through Feb 28 daily bag limit 8 possession 24.

Rabbit season: Through Feb 28 daily bag limit 8 possession 24.

Quail season: Through Feb. 28, statewide, private lands only. Daily bag limit 10 possession 30.

Fishing For Tucker Bass Classic: Save the date! The 9th Annual tournament is scheduled for February 2, 2019 at Cabela's in Gonzales. Rules and registration available at www.fishingfortucker.com or call Team Bass Tournament Information: Phone: 225-921-9332 E-mail: fishing4tucker@gmail.com Kid's Derby Information: Phone: 337-257-6212.

La-BASS Open Tournament: Feb 16 at Doiron’s Landing Stephensville, La. benefitting Anything Outdoors Helping Kids. $100 entry fee, register morning of tournament. See La-Bass on their Facebook page for rules and all info.

LSU College Bass Team Benefit Tournament: Feb. 17 at Doiron's Landing in Stephensville, La. benefitting LSU Fishing Team. $100 entry fee, register morning of tournament. See LSU Fishing Team on their Facebook page for info and entry form rules.

Need an event publicized? Contact Lyle at reelman@eatel.net