persistence in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success.
If you would of asked 37-year-old insurance producer, Michael Steinmeyer, 10 years ago if he was ready to be the World’s Championship Duck Calling Contest winner, his answer would have been no.
Steinmeyer, of Jackson, Mo, celebrated victorious, winning the 2019 Wings Over The Prairie World’s Championship Duck Calling Contest, Saturday, November 30, in Stuttgart, Ar. but the road to victory wasn’t an easy one.
Competing in duck calling competitions since 2006, Steinmeyer has had his fair share of disappointments.
“I blew in two contests, then blew in three or four more and said ok, I really do suck,” said Steinmeyer.
Giving up was never an option, even though the champ admits, he felt like it at times.
“It got to the point where you have invested so much time, so why would you give up,” said Steinmeyer. “The thought of not going back to Stuttgart for the contest is what kept me going.”
Perseverance paid off for Steinmeyer, who has been blowing the same routine his entire career, slightly adjusting along the way.
Saturday night, in front of friends, family and duck hunting fans, that same routine secured his title as the new reigning world champ.
“It’s the same thing over and over again for 10 plus years,” said Steinmeyer. “You don’t go by sound anymore, you go by feel.”
The feel of conquest hit Steinmeyer when he walked off the stage after the first round of the contest.
“It’s the ring of the hail call. Whenever you hit it, you feel it through your skin,” he said. “The way the feed call flowed so fluidly, at that point, when you’re on, you’re on.”
Steinmeyer credits mentors such as the late Butch Richenback, who he says meant the world to him. He also thanks his friend Tyler who he has competed against and his late friend Ryan Hudson, who he said kept him encouraged.
“The people that have helped me along the way are no longer with us but they have helped me through it,” said Steinmeyer.
So what’s next for the 2019 World Champion?
“I don’t know yet, honestly,” said Steinmeyer. “Ask me in February when I show up in Burlington and I’m not blowing.”
Until then, Steinmeyer will be enjoying his first-place winnings, which include, $10,000, a specially designed championship ring by Wilkerson’s Jewelers, a War Eagle Duck Boat, and thousands of dollars in gifts and prizes.
Steinmeyer now joins the championship club amongst many great world legends.
Michael Steinmeyer’s road to hope cultivated perseverance and determination, even through the inevitable.
“If you’re going to do it, do it,” he said. “Stick with it and don’t give up.”