Volume 11 Issue 5

Matt Emmons, an American air-rifle shooter, holds the junior world record in the 50 meter three-position event, won multiple ISSF World Cup Finals, and has compiled a gold, silver, and bronze medal while competing in various events as a four-time Olympian.  By most standards he could be considered one of the greatest shooters in U.S. history.

During the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Emmons had already won the gold medal in the prone rifle competition and was poised to easily win another in the three-position event.  This is an event in which participants shoot from their stomach, knees, and feet at a target fifty meters away.  Going into his final shot, Matt held a three-point lead and was so far ahead of the field that he only needed a mediocre score to win his second gold medal.

Emmons aimed his rifle at the target, took a deep breath and fired.  Bull’s-eye!  He had hit a target – only the wrong one! Instead, he shot at the wrong target, one lane over.  His score of nil sent him from an easy first, to last place.  He had cross-fired, an extremely rare mistake in elite competition.

The popular author, speaker, and pastor John C. Maxwell once said, “A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way”.  Much like the situation with Matt Emmons’ final shot at the Athens Olympics; one slight glance off your target can throw even the best intentions off course.

Strong leadership and direction is vital to the continued growth and improvement of a community.  That is why in this edition of Saline County Lifestyles, we turn our focus to the aspiring mayoral candidates aiming to lead our cities (Bryant, Benton, Bauxite, & Haskell) in the upcoming term. Your town. Your life. Your magazine.

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