Holy Smokes … Going Out
With A Bang!

A Humorous Way of Really Getting Into Handloading!

Tank had a third set of teeth come in which were removed in 9th grade.
They’d surely make some dandy 00 buckshot.

I recently read an article on social media about a rodeo star who met his demise. The family decided to cremate him and spread his ashes, via a bucking broncho during the next opening rodeo season, on the last bucking bronco he rode. Like everyone, I found the romanticism touching and appropriate as the bronc spread the ashes in the arena. The article stated there wasn’t a dry eye in the place.

Dead End?

This got me thinking. With roughly two-thirds of my sand in the lower half of the hourglass of life, it’s only natural to think about death. Hell, none of us are getting out of here alive, right? This point is really driven home when you see friends and relatives going to the “happy hunting ground” all too fast.

When thinking of my own destiny, I don’t want people slobbering and blubbering over my well-worn husk. I want them laughing when thinking of me. If people can laugh and smile when thinking about you, you had a pretty darn good life.

Cremation … The Perfect Filler?

I remember years ago reading about a company in Alabama that offered a unique service. They get an “A” for effort and originality for their company name, Holy Smokes. The basis of their business is taking your cremated remains and loading them in shotgun, rifle, or handgun shells. No kidding. Their selling point is “take your buddy out for one last hunt.” How cool is that, in a slightly morbid way? But the more I think about, the more appealing it seems me. Although never much of a shotgunner, I think it would be funny to have a few “special” shotgun shells loaded. But there’s a catch.

They say when you’re cremated, everything is burnt to ash, except your teeth. Here’s where the shotgun shells come in. I’d want my teeth to be used as projectiles in a couple of the shotgun shells. It would give new meaning to taking a bite out of crime for any near-do-well breaking into my wife’s home. My pearly whites would certainly pattern into a big grin penetrating a surly home invader. Plus, I have some nice big molars.

It wouldn’t take much. Just a pinch of your ash on top of your favorite load
and your done. This .500 S&W cartridge is a fitting vehicle for one last hunt.

Special Keith Slug

I never had a cavity until my prenuptial tooth cleaning at the age of 27. Afterwards, five more cavities appeared. There just may be enough “filling” material for one good Keith bullet. Hopefully there’s enough for my favorite slug, the Lyman 454424. If not, we could downsize to the 358429, especially in hollow point form. The silver/mercury alloy would be about perfect. It would make a dandy pendant for my daughter.

Pickin’ Calibers

The jist of my ashes would be used for filler in some cool big bore cartridges for single-action revolvers, naturally. Also a few lever guns and maybe some African class bolt guns or double rifles. This is where picking your friends by the guns they shoot is of upmost importance. Pall bearers be damned! I want friends with big bore rifles and handguns! For me, .45 Colt shooters and above, for handguns. The 454 Casull, 475 and 500 Linebaugh would be great. The .480 Ruger would certainly get the nod for some blasting fun too.

Levergun shooters surely would be handed some cartridges with my ashes mixed in for the .45-70, my favorite. My ashes would be spread on real “happy hunting grounds” and not some euphemistic place. It would be poetic justice with each pull of the trigger.

Going Along For The Ride

Your cowboy action shooter buddies could bring you along to every shoot. You’d be nestled all snug in your brass case, hanging from a belt loop, waiting to be fired in one of the events. You may be high man without having to shoot. “Way to go Tank! You did good on that last phase,” your buddies will scream!

As I’m half joking about these ashes stuffed in a cartridge deal, it does have some merit. Like I said, if it makes your family and buddies smile, why not? And if you managed to crack a grin while reading this, I’m well on my way to seriously considering this last feat of handloading. I always did get into handloading more than the average guy.

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