Marcus May, a 32-year-old Hammond Police corporal, will be his department's lone representative in the shotgun shooting competition at the World Police and Fire Games, being held Thursday through Aug. 10 in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
Nah, there's no pressure.
When the games were held two years ago in New York City, a major event as it coincided with the 10th anniversary of 9/11, fellow Hammond PD vet Mike Danko proved to be the foremost deadeye of the field, winning two gold medals, two silver medals and one bronze while recording the highest overall score.
"I'll be happy if I get a tin medal," May said.
"You'll be fine," assured Danko, who then confided when May was out of earshot. "He'll probably be intimidated with this being his first one. I know I was."
What gave Danko pause at his first games was that many of the shooters he was going up against had coaches.
"And some of these guys would practice without the guns in their hands," Danko said. "They were taking aim ... going through the motions."
For this year's WPF Games, Danko won't accompany May to Belfast.
"But he's kind of took me under his wing as my coach, and I've really improved," said May, who will compete in single tramp, sporting clays, single skeet shot and "down the line."
"My confidence level has really improved," May said.
May and Danko regularly practice and shoot in leagues at the Izaak Walton League Glen Park Chapter in Hobart.
Every summer, May returns to his native land of Ireland where he was born in Wexford and raised there until his family moved to Chicago when he was 9 years old.
"It's beautiful this time of the year," he said. "I still have a lot family down there."
You can point out that May technically isn't returning native country for the WPF Games as Wexford is in Ireland and Belfast is in North Ireland.
"Really, it's all Ireland," May said with a smile.