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October 2018
Author: Garth Jenson

It is with a heavy heart that I write this article. I had the great fortune of meeting and talking with Jason Hairston on numerous occasions. I always came away from those conversations more inspired and invigorated to go the extra mile and to not settle for average or even better, but instead, strive for excellence. I am not a person who idolizes individuals for their fame and fortune, but I have always looked up to those people who work hard for what they believe in and strive to accomplish their goals regardless of the amount of work it takes. Jason Hairston was one those people who was at the top of my list.

It’s hard to comprehend how one man’s vision for outdoor hunting gear could transform not one but two companies into industry leaders in 14 years, but for those who knew and worked with Jason, it came as no surprise. There are very few people in history who leave behind such a deep footprint that no matter the amount of time that passes it will still be evident. Jason’s footprint on the hunting community is ingrained for the remainder of time.

Huntin’ Fool had the privilege of working with Jason throughout his Sitka days as well as being the first company that KUIU advertised with in January of 2011. I think it is safe to say that you would be hard-pressed to try and thumb through any hunting magazine or hunting-related social media thread without seeing KUIU in it. It is definitely apparent in the pages of Huntin’ Fool how many hunters’ lives and hunts have been elevated because of the work and determination of this man. I can only hope that the groundwork Jason laid for innovation in the hunting industry can carry on and continue to progress without its leader. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Jason’s family and friends.