It all started with missing magazines. In the second quarter Archery magazine of this year, the NFAA published a list of missing magazines and requested help to find them. Many archers helped in the search for the missing magazines by donating their own single copy, but there was one archer that helped us find copies of all the missing magazines. Jim Shannon, a member of the NFAA since 1956, donated his entire collection of Archery magazines to the NFAA. After we received his magazines we received a letter from his daughter, Yvonne Carter, informing us of the many stories Jim was sure to have for us. So, we decided to call Jim. This is Jim’s story:
Jim Shannon first began archery because of his stepfather. Jim wanted a gun to hunt rabbits; his stepfather said no. Unhindered, Jim made himself a bow to hunt the rabbits. He continued hunting throughout high school and college. At 20 years old Jim graduated college and joined the Air Force.
Jim was a member of the Air Force for 30 years and 13 days. While he was a member of the Air Force, Jim was stationed all around the world. But, whatever town Jim was stationed in always was missing one thing: an archery range. He built NFAA approved courses in Germany, Hawaii and Okinawa.
Not only did Jim build courses, he was a competitive Recurve archer. He began competing in tournaments while he was stationed in Hawaii. Jim attended the 16th Outdoor Nationals where he only intended to shoot for fun. But as a surprise to himself, Jim won the 325 class. The most satisfying tournament Jim participated in was the Far East Invitational in Japan. Out of the 300 archers who participated, Jim placed first in the Recurve class.
Competing and building ranges wasn’t enough for Jim. In 1957 he became a NFAA registered archery instructor. Jim taught his wife and daughter to shoot. Jim retired to San Anglo, Texas and joined the Concho Valley Archery Association. He teaches for free anyone in town who wants lessons. Most recently, Jim taught a Girl Scout troop the basics of archery.
“Even though I can’t physically shoot anymore, it doesn’t mean I’ll stop loving the sport,” Jim said.