Lake LaChance of LaSalle came home from his first hunt with a 25.2-pound turkey.

Lake LaChance is just 4 years old.

But he already is a successful hunter.

The LaSalle youth recently bagged a big turkey during his very first hunt.

Why would someone so young be handling a gun?

His father, Tim LaChance, has a very simple answer.

“He’s learning how to live right,” he said.

Tim, 34, is an avid hunter.

“When I was 10, I lost my dad,” he said. “My brother-in-law took me under his wing and introduced me to hunting. I’ve been hooked ever since.”

He started with a single-shot, 20-guage shotgun hunting squirrels and rabbits.

“He took me on my first youth hunt at 14,” Tim said. “That’s when I shot my first deer.”

That button buck was the first of nearly 50 deer Tim has brought down during his time as a hunter.

Tim introduced Lake to hunting soon after the boy was born.

“When he was two, he started shooting with a BB gun,” Tim said. “He was really interested in hunting. He wanted to be like dad.”

There is no minimum age for learning how to handle a gun.

“You can start at any age,” Tim said. “You just have to be with an adult.”

And how did mom (Amber LaChance) feel about Lake heading out on his first hunt at the age of 4?

“She was all for it,” Tim said. “She hunts, too. We’re all hunters in our family. We’re just passing along the family tradition.”

Youngest son Colton, 2, will be joining that tradition before long.

“He shoots a Nerf gun,” Tim said.

The LaChance family owns hunting land near Brooklyn and Tecumseh.

“We go a couple of times a week during season,” Tim said. “We get out as much as we can.”

Tim took Lake for a hunt on the land near Brooklyn for the first time on April 18.

“We got out there pretty early and got set up,” Tim said. “It was still dark. We could hear the turkeys in their roost. Lake had never seen the sun come up. It was his first time to see a sunrise.”

Father and son did not have to wait long in their pop-up blind.

“Around 6:50 or 7 a.m., the turkeys came out of their roost and we started to see them in the field,” Tim said. “They slowly started slowly working their way to our decoys.

“A hen came up around five yards away. I got Lake on my lap and got him ready.”

It was lucky that everything happened so quickly.

Keeping the attention of a 4-year-old is not easy.

“It’s very tough,” Tim said. “I had just given him his tablet. He was getting bored and we had not even been in the blind for 30 minutes.”

Lake has a youth model Remington 20-guage shotgun. Tim had set up a bi-pod stand for the boy so all he would have to do is aim and fire.

“I asked Lake if he was ready because if it happened, it was going to happen really fast. I helped him get his gun up.

“It came up real quick. It was not 10 yards way. I told Lake, ‘Shoot, shoot, shoot!’ and he finally pulled the trigger. It fell right there. He was ecstatic.”

The bird weighed 25.2 pounds, had a beard of 10 ½ inches and 1 ¼-inch spurs.

“It was a big one,” Tim said.

Unfortunately for Tim and Lake, hunting season is now over until Sept. 15.

“We go fishing during the summer,” said Tim.

Lake’s first hunt was a great bonding experience for father and son.

“It was a day to remember,” Tim said.