Clement Theed, Former Judge, NRA Director
March 1990,MiamiHerald Obit./ Vargas 12/03
“There have been no major improvements since 1958: “The land has already been acquired for expansion.”
Since the addition of the Junior Rifle program in 1957, popularity ofTrailGladesRangehas continuously increased.
“It is no wonder that the range is so popular.” A youngster can come and shoot all day for a 25 cent fee. He must furnish his own ammunition, but the range can furnish guns, pads and scopes.”
“The success of our junior program is due largely to the number of qualified supervisors we have who are willing to donate their time to teach youngsters.”
“At last count we had 511 boys and girls active in the junior program.”
“We have competition once a month which is larger than any other city has as its annual match.”
“Trail Glades” Range should be expanded from the present 69 shooting positions to 100. “Booths should be built around the positions to protect shooters from wind and noise and a 300 meter range for high powered rifles should be added.
With these changes, the Pan-Am rifle matches could very well be attracted here.
At present, there are three rifle matches that make up the most important competition on an international scale. These are the Olympics, World Championships and Pan-American Games. The three are held on alternate years with one year marked for lay-off.
This is an off year for international shooting competition. Next year, world championships will be fired inGermany. The following year (1967) will be the Pan-am competition, followed in ’68 by the Olympics, Clem Theed said in the Miami News in 1967.
March 1990, the Miami Herald reported on Clem Theed’s death. On the serious side, Mr. Theed’s accomplishments included roles as a justice of the peace; a columnist for The Miami Metropolis, which became The Miami Daily News; a member of the South Florida Flood Control District, where he worked for conservation of water supplies forEvergladesNational Park.
He also was appointed to the Dade County Budget Committee and helped acquire land for the county’sSportsmanPark“TrailGladesRanges,” where he helped develop the target turning machinery. The pistol and rifle ranges at the park were names in his honor in 1982.
Guns were a passion for Mr. Theed, who was once national director of the National Rifle Association. In the 1940’s, he developed and appeared in Columbia Pictures movie short on trick shooting, Trigger Magic. In 1971, he was named “Man of the Year” by the NRA.
From 1946 to 1951, he served as a municipal and police court judge inSouth Miami. He was past president of the Southwest Kiwanis Club, past commander of the Lindley DeGarmo Post, No. 70 and past commander of the Dade County Commanders Council.
Two of Mr. Theed’s pranks are classics in the family lore, said his son Robert Theed.
One time Mr. Theed cut his finger shaving and took advantage of the injury to spread blood across his neck and face. He lay on the bathroom floor for almost an hour before his unsuspecting wife, Etta walked in.
“Mother screamed,” Robert Theed said.
Another time, Mr. Theed purloined a three pound sirloin that Mrs. Theed was preparing for a company dinner. He smeared a bit of the sirloin drippings on the floor for the family dog.
“She assumed the dog had eaten the steak,” said Robert Theed.
Clem Theed was a member of the Range Development Committee of the National Rifle Association (NRA) ofAmerica. He served as a member of the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee of the NRA for 10 years and after his retirement from legal practice in 1962, he served as an NRA Field Representative until May 31, 1967.
He was one of the country’s top pistol competitors for over 15 years and was instrumental in establishing theTrailGladesRangeinDade County,Florida, now known as the “Clem Theed” Range. Clem spent a lifetime building ranges and assisting in range design and range construction.
He was a life-long supporter of the NRA and the principles for which it stands, and having been honored by the Association for his valued contributions was names as the recipient of the prestigious NRA Public Service Award for 1971.