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The Civilian Marksmanship Program is dedicated to the respect for and safe handling of firearms, instilling patriotism and discipline in our youth participants.  The CMP provides its constituents with the highest level of instruction in the proper control of firearms by highly-skilled coaches and veteran range safety officers in the classroom, at our ranges and wherever the CMP banner is displayed. 

Upcoming CMP Events:

Tuesday & Thursday Night Open Public Shooting
CMP Marksmanship Centers,
Port Clinton, OH
Anniston, AL

Shooters, including aspiring new shooters are invited to take advantage of a new opportunity to do practice shooting.  Both ranges consist of 80-point, 10-meter air gun range and are fully equipped with electronic targets that accommodate air rifle, air pistol or National Match Air Rifle shooting.  Instruction and equipment are also available.  Visit
MarksmanshipCenters.htm  for additional information.

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The CMP currently offers three Apps for shooting sports. Each download supports the Civilian Marksmanship Program. For more information, visit

Please note the changes for the 2014 National Match Schedule posted at


 Photos may be downloaded or ordered on our website at


2013 Western CMP Games

11 - 15 October 2013
Ben Avery Shooting Facility,
Phoenix, AZ

 to view the Official Match Program and to register On-line.
NEW IN 2013: The CMP will hold the traveling Small Arms Firing School and M16 EIC Match on Friday October 11th during the CMP Western Games. A new Modern Military Category has been added to the GSM Match. Competitors will have the ability to fire in a maximum of four separate events during the CMP Games. Shooters may choose to fire a Garand, Springfield, Vintage Military or a Modern Military Rifle.


Printable Version

Shooter Donates Organ to Save Hearst Doubles Partner

By Ashley Brugnone, CMP Writer


CAMP PERRY, OH – Tim Boyle and Mark Schoess had been to Camp Perry before, but the 2013 National Matches was different. For them, it was more than just about the shooting – it was the pinnacle point in a long journey the two had taken over the past year. Standing on the firing line for the Hearst Doubles Match, the pair gazed downrange at the target, thinking of all of the things that had made that moment possible.

“I had signed up for the Vintage Sniper Match for this year, but in one of our phone conversations, Mark mentioned that he was signed up for the Hearst,” said Tim Boyle, 58, of Kensington, MN. “So I cancelled my Vintage Sniper and signed up for the Hearst. It was a great idea that had just never dawned on me. And it should have.”

About 10 years ago, Tim went in for a physical while applying for additional life insurance and failed. His creatinine blood test, which measures kidney function, came back low. After tracking his kidneys for a number of years and participating in an ultrasound test, Tim was diagnosed with polycystic kidney disease (PKD), consisting of noncancerous cysts surrounding the organ, in 2003. He went on the donor list in 2009.

“I was hopeful for a donor, but it’s about a five year wait. So, another December would come and go – and I never really thought it wasn’t going to happen, and I never wanted to get my hopes up that it was going to happen,” Tim said.

Mark Schoess (left) donated his kidney to fellow Minnesota shooter Tim Boyle (right) to help restore Tims quality of life. The two shot in the Hearst Doubles Match together at the 2013 National Trophy Rifle Matches.

Mark Schoess, 54, of Stacy, MN, first met Tim as a member of the Minnesota Service Rifle Shooting Team. The two shot together at the Gopher Rifle & Revolver Club in Harris, MN – Mark’s home range. Mark went with the team to Camp Perry for the first time five years ago, where he and Tim shared a dorm together and got to know each other as roommates.

Back in Minnesota, the pair began to see each other occasionally at local matches. Though the two live in separate parts of the state, coincidentally, Tim’s home is about 10 miles from where Mark’s grandparents lived and where his parents currently have a lake home.

“In a way, it’s almost like he’s from my hometown – like a generation removed,” Mark said. “We’re not that far apart in age, and I immediately learned what a great guy he was. Just a really funny, helpful, great guy.”

In 2012, Tim’s nephrologist (kidney doctor) had been monitoring his creatinine levels, which had been getting lower and lower. Finally, they spiked. The Friday before the team was set to head out to Camp Perry, the nephrologist contacted Tim and told him he needed to be prepped right away for dialysis.

“I didn’t want to deal with that because I thought I could get one more Camp Perry in,” Tim said. “When I got an email with the team roster and saw my name on it, I was backed into a corner. I had to call our coach and tell him that I had to back out because I have a kidney disease and have to go in for dialysis. He didn’t even know that I had a disease.”

Tim then sent an extensive email to the rest of his team, letting them know that he wouldn’t be able to attend the Matches. It was the first his team had learned of his struggle.

“When we got the email from Tim, I was stunned. I had no idea about it – nobody knew. He had hidden it from the team. It was like I had gotten hit by a bat or something. I just couldn’t believe it,” Mark said. “I didn’t know much about PKD, but with some research I learned that it’s the most common disease that nobody knows about.”

Along with being in the dark about the disease Tim carried, Mark didn’t know anything about kidney donation. All he could do was hope for the best – hope for a miracle for his shooting friend.

After the Camp Perry trip in 2012, Mark went to spend some time with his parent’s at their cabin. Because it was so close to Tim, Mark decided to drop in on him to see how he was doing.

“We had a pleasant afternoon talking kidneys, guns and whatnot. I didn’t want to give him any impression that I was going to donate, but I just wanted to find out what it took and what the procedure was to get tested,” Mark said.

Tim gave Mark an 800 number for the University of Minnesota Medical Center of Fairview, which happens to be one of the top transplant centers in the world – having conducted more than 7,000 kidney transplants since their first successful transplant 50 years ago. After thinking it through, Mark called the number.

He had to answer a series of questions, followed by undergoing a series of blood work. In early December 2012, he had to endure a rigorous day of testing to determine whether or not he would be healthy and fit enough to become a donor. But by Christmas, he learned that he had passed.

“I called Tim on Christmas and let him know. He had no idea that I was even getting tested,” Mark said. “I told him I want to do what I can to make him better. Of course I think he was a bit shocked, but also very, very grateful.”

“That was – ,” Tim paused as his eyes began to well up with tears. He stared off into the distance, trying to search for the words. After a few silent moments and a hard swallow, he collected himself and continued with his story. “I was extraordinarily humbled. I can’t express my feelings. I always had faith that a donor would occur, but I expected it to be a deceased donor, not someone that I knew reasonably well.”

“It was definitely a shock. I might have even gotten emotional,” Tim went on to say, with a smile.

I always had faith that a donor would occur, but I expected it to be a deceased donor, not someone that I knew reasonably well, Tim said.

“When Mark called me about doing it, he said let’s do it soon, like the end of January, because we don’t want it to affect our rifle practice,” Tim said with a laugh. “I thought it was indicative of his mindset, which was let’s just get this out of the way so we can move on with what’s important with our lives.”

“Mark suggested to schedule the surgery in January so that the pair would have enough time to recover in time to shoot in the National Matches.

On January 30, 2013, Mark and Tim were placed on adjacent operating tables and underwent the life-changing surgery.

“My wife was very supportive. I do have a strong faith, and I had been praying about it,” Mark said. “My wife asked me right before I went into pre-op if I was nervous, and I said no. She was a bit shocked by that. But I really had a very calm feeling about it.”

After six hours of surgery, the procedure was done. When he awoke, Tim immediately noticed the difference in his body. Unfortunately for Mark, it’s typical for the donor to have a tougher recovery period than the recipient. Though tired and still in some pain, Mark was pleased to see the results of the surgery.

“The day after the surgery, I was still flat on my back, and Tim came waltzing in my room. He looked like a new man,” Mark said. “He’s a very strong person, and a great man in character. At that moment he was 100 percent.”

Mark (foreground) suggested that he and Tim (background) shoot in the Hearst Doubles Match as a way of celebrating Tim’s recovery and the journey they took together.

With his life now back on track, Tim didn’t waste any time signing up for the 2013 National Trophy Rifle Matches at Camp Perry. Although he had spent months getting back into the habit of shooting with his new kidney, he’s still in shock that he made it to the Matches.

“I can’t believe I’m here,” he said after firing in the Hearst Doubles Match with Mark. “I did average, believe it or not. Maybe even a little better than I did in 2011. I’m not as fatigued, my stamina is back up – they say it’s about a year recovery after the transplant, I’m about 6 months into it, and it’s all golden.”

Out of 272 shooters that competed in the Hearst Doubles Match, Mark and Tim finished at a respectable 113, firing a combined score of 542-6x. Tim led the pair with his individual score.

Mark and Tim finished the match with a 542-6x. Tim led in the teams individual scoring.

Though coming back to Camp Perry was never a question in Tim’s mind, his wife was a little apprehensive. She called him every day to see how he was holding up and to make sure he was staying healthy. With each phone call, he honestly reassured her that he was enjoying himself and doing just fine.

“I don’t need to misrepresent myself. Everything is going great. And next year is going to be even better,” he said. “I’m better than I’ve ever been.”

The sport of shooting has a way of bringing people together. In this case, strangers who knew nothing of one another except a common interest found each other becoming a significant part of each other’s lives.

“The real story is Mark. The donor is the key player in this. There’s no question about it.  The recipient, they’re just that – a recipient of someone else’s unbelievable gift,” Tim said. “The more we can get that out there – that gift is something that you can’t describe, because we donate time and money, but a body part, you can’t get any more personal than that.”

With tears in his eyes once more, Tim expressed his gratitude for his renewed self, saying, “I’m indebted the rest of my life. Not just to Mark, but to society in general.”

For Mark, the doctors say his missing kidney shouldn’t affect his life in any way. But, as Mark knows, his missing kidney has affected his life more than he ever could have imagined.

I know Tim and I will always be friends. If we live another 30, 40 years, we will still be friends, said Mark, who chose to donate his organ to save his friend.

“I didn’t even think about donating at first, because I didn’t really know much about it. A lifelong friend of mine, after I told him about Tim, looked at me and said, ‘Well, give him a kidney!’ And I looked at him, and it dawned on me. At that moment, it was the catalyst for doing it,” he said. “I would encourage other people, if they know someone who doesn’t have a family member or a loved one who can donate, if you’re fit enough to donate and save a life, do so.”

Joined together on the firing line and forever joined as friends, the bond between Tim and Mark is unbreakable. Their friendship is now rooted to the deepest part of their hearts – and a kidney.

“There’s nothing I wouldn’t do for Mark. We wouldn’t have come so close without this. We don’t talk about it though. We just work really well together,” Tim said.

“I know Tim and I will always be friends. If we live another 30, 40 years, we will still be friends,” Mark added. “Even though I’ve only known Tim for a few years, just in the first few days of knowing him, I felt very close to him. And I feel like he’s the same old Tim again now.”
For more information on living organ and tissue donation, visit


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Camp Perry Program Center
Phone: (419) 635-2141      Fax: (419) 635-2802

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