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Having traveled a shooting path paved with “I thought back to what if I had won that fi rst


or second medal, what would have happened? Would the story be as good? But more


importantly, would have I learned as much. The things I’ve learned in the process, about myself, the sport and life in general, I wouldn’t trade that for anything or any amount of money. “


Of regret, he has none. So comfortable with who he is, what he has ac-


complished and where he’s headed, that he even has a virtuous perspec- tive on the career bobbles, not afraid to be defi ned by them any longer. Recently, at the Bundesliga fi nals, a man was sitting next to Matt and


his youngest son Marty as they watched his wife Katy compete. The man struck up a conversation with him, wondering if Marty would someday grow up to be a shooter like his dad. The man replied: “Well, if he does, I hope he doesn’t make the same mistakes his daddy did.” The response Matt issued says much about just how far he’s come. “Just


because he’s my son, I hope he doesn’t,” he calmly responded. “But to be honest with you, if he was able to deal with it the way I did, I hope he makes even more mistakes, because the things he’ll learn will make him stronger than anyone else around him.” As self-help author Napoleon Hill said, “Every adversity, every failure, ev-


ery heartache carries with it the seed of an equal or greater benefi t.” If adversity is what is necessary for a man to become successful, then Matt’s benefi ts in the face of bad luck have been life-altering, much more so than another medal or two. “They absolutely do defi ne my career, but in a good way,” Matt said of


his near misses. “I came to terms with those things back in 2012. I fi nally started thinking about it in a different way. I thought back to what if I had won that fi rst or second medal, what would have happened? Would the story be as good? But more importantly, would have I learned as much. The things I’ve learned in the process, about myself, the sport and life in gen- eral, I wouldn’t trade that for anything or any amount of money. My life and my shooting career are so much richer because of those experiences. The way I look at it tells a much different and better story.”


unprecedented success, surprising fallacy, gra- cious humility and relished opportunity, what comes next remains to be seen. Having moved to the Czech Republic to be closer to Katy’s fam- ily, the Emmons clan has fi nally found comfort. Where shooting once was the perpetual oc-


cupier of time for Matt, it now has its rightful place in the Emmons family hierarchy. Now, nothing is more important than raising his two children and his role as a husband. For Matt, whose success has been a testament to his hard work and dedication to the sport, the change may be new, but certainly not unwel- comed.


“It’s so much easier when you have the time


to let shooting take up so much of your life,” admits Emmons. “Which is fi ne, there’s a time and place for everything. But now, I’ve got three other people around me that are defi nitely much more important than shooting ever will be. I’ve got to shoot, that’s my job essentially. It’s not like I have this defi ciency inside that I need to overcome something in shooting to make myself feel better.”


Emmons with wife Katy, son Marty and daughter Julie


2012 Men’s Three-Position Rifl e Olympic medalists (l to r): Jonghyun Kim, Nicco Campriani, Matt Emmons, Photo by: Richard Mackson, USA Today Sports


March 2015 | USA Shooting News


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