By Chris Avena
When I was contemplating who I would like to interview for our Fall Edition of American Outdoor News, only one name came to mind. The Lakosky's. I am of the opinion that they are the all American family type that embrace the outdoor lifestyle. They have the same concerns and issues that many of us encounter during our day to day lives and they rely on their family, friendships and faith to guide them through the good times as well as the bad. As always, Tiffany is open, honest and revealing when it comes to sharing with her fans. With that in mind, on with our interview.
AON: Prior to your career in the Outdoor Industry, both of you has budding careers. Tiffany, you worked for the Airline and Lee was a Chemical Engineer. What was the deciding factor that allowed you to take the risk into a new career?
Tiffany: Although we both had great jobs that allowed us the freedom to hunt and travel pretty much whenever we would like Lee’s job was changing drastically for the upcoming year. He was going to go from working shift work to working Mon-Fri 9-5, 3 weeks of vacation and weekends off, he was getting a pretty good size raise so when he accepted the new position he thought it would be ok, however as Oct came closer he realized he had made a mistake in accepting the position, I told him it was time to find something new, Life is to short to be unhappy!!! So he quit, 2 weeks later we moved to Iowa!
This mindset was brought on by the early death of my dad, he always talked about what he wanted to do when he retired, he passed away at 47 and never made it to retirement, we weren’t going to make the same mistake!
AON: Looking Back, is there anything that you would have done differently?
Tiffany: The only thing we would have maybe done differently was to have kids a bit earlier as Raising our children has been unbelievable!!!
AON: What is there about Lee & Tiffany that your fans would not automatically think about when they think of you?
Tiffany: Hmmm, prob that we do have other things that we love to do besides manage deer!!! I love going up north fishing and boating and our kids do too!! We both love skiing and spending time in the mountains and we also love to snowmobile!!!
AON: Besides your family, What Inspires you?
Tiffany: Family is everything!!! But we also have lots of fans that we’ve met over the years and some of their stories inspire me to be the best that I can be even when the going gets tough!!!
AON: Do you enjoy hunting more with or without the cameras on?
Tiffany: It’s crazy about the camera question as I’ve never not been filmed, everything that I’ve ever shot has been on film starting with my very first deer!!!
Lee always had a camera with him, not because we ever thought we’d do a TV show but because we just want to be able to to re-live our favorite experiences!!! It’s such second nature now and neither of us would ever dream of not having a camera now when we are hunting.
AON: Being relatively New parents, how has that changed you? Has it changed your approach to the outdoors?
Tiffany: It really hasn’t changed a bit! We just try and show our kids by example what and why we love the outdoors, everyday we are doing something outside and they are right there by our sides!
AON: At what age will you teach your children to hunt, shoot a bow or a rifle?
Tiffany: Cameron received his first Mathews bow on his 3rd Birthday, he likes to carry it around and pretend to shoot but we we try and properly teach him the mechanics he doesn’t have the patience, so we will try again in a few months. I don’t think there is any set age, just when they are ready. Right from the start it needs to be a positive experience so it’s something they want to do!!
AON: As your children get older, where is the one place that you look forward to taking them to hunt?
Tiffany: Home!!! Our Iowa farms are built from the love, sweat and tears from both of us. We want them to love it here as much as we do but also appreciate the work that’s gone into creating what we have!!! Then elk hunting!!! The first time u hear a close elk bugle is mind blowing!
AON: What was the scariest moment that you have ever had while hunting?
Tiffany: I've really not had any besides a few close calls while in a tree stand, thank goodness we are always hooked up to safety lines. Lee has had a very close encounter with a brown bear while elk hunting on Kodiak island!!! So scary!
AON: Both Lee and yourself went through a very emotional time when you were diagnosed with cancer. How did you as a family deal with this life altering event?
Tiffany: It made us as a couple and family way stronger!!! It brought us all closer and closer to the Lord!!! It makes us not sweat the small stuff and love everyday as tomorrow is not a promise!!! In the end even though it was a bit difficult It made us better people and just thankful for the life and health that we have!
AON: Now that you are cancer free, do you approach life differently?
Tiffany: A little bit, I appreciate simple things a bit more like beautiful sunsets and stars in the sky! I thank God for allowing me to be here to raise our babies and be a wife to Lee!! I love life more and truly don’t sweat the small stuff that used to drive me nuts!
AON: Has there ever been a time when you thought about walking away from your career in the outdoor industry?
Tiffany: Not on your life!!! We are so lucky to be doing what we are doing!!! They say find a job you love and you will never ever work!! It’s so true as we are constantly doing something but it’s all things that we love to do!!! And now that we have children I can’t think of a better way to raise them! This industry is so family oriented and has been amazing to us along with our fans!! We always say as long as people are watching we will continue!
AON: When traveling, do you still check to see if Lee's Seat and Tray Table are locked and in the upright position?
Tiffany: Ha!!! I totally do, and got anyone who’s traveling with us!!! I also make sure their bags r stowed and that they have no garbage in their seat back pocket and garbage on the floor!!!!
AON: Thank you again for taking the time to speak to us. You are always so accommodating. Good Luck this season and as usual – Hunt Safe!