Local

Elizabeth Twp. Man First To Shoot, Kill Black Bear In Southern Allegheny County

Reporting: Kym Gable
(Photo Courtesy: Derrick Honaker)

(Photo Courtesy: Derrick Honaker)

ELIZABETH TOWNSHIP (KDKA) — You could call it a real-life story of man versus beast.

An Elizabeth Township man says he killed the first black bear to be shot in southern Allegheny County.

Avid hunter Derrick Honaker was deer hunting in a remote area of the township on Tuesday when he spotted something he thought was an old barrel.

“Then, the 55-gallon drum rolls over, stretches his arms out and proceeds to stand up,” said Honaker. “That’s when I realized it’s a bear, and I take a shot.”

That was just the beginning of Honaker’s 30-minute ordeal.

The bear ran off and Honaker gave chase. After firing several more rounds, he came face to face with the 300-pound bear in a nearby creek bed.

“The bear is sitting there with his mouth open roaring at me,” Honaker said. “He jumps up on the bank… and I take another shot, the final shot.”

Derrick fired seven times. Five bullets hit the bear.

Karl and Carol Blaha own the 131 acres of land. They often allow close friends, like Honaker, to hunt on their property.

Carol considered the bear a threat.

“That is a concern because you never know. It’s got paws, big claws,” Blaha told KDKA’s Kym Gable.

Honaker said, during the entire chase, he never felt frightened.

“Nope,” he said. “I’m the one holding the gun.”

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