My Memory of Lucky the Tree:

My name is Alex and I’ve hunted for 11 years, being able to successfully fill my freezer and share blessings with church members and friends. Happy the 2008-09 season finally came around, I could not wait to hit the woods hard that first opening week hoping to finally harvest a wall hanger. Little did I know that this year was going to be an emotional roller coaster. My wife Alex (yes, we have the same name) and I had scouted hard during the off season and had spotted a great bachelor group and thought we had patterned them well. During one of our scouting trips, we looked for a good tree to prepare. While my wife was helping me prepare shooting lanes, she found a rack of a non-typical 20 yards from “our” tree. WHAT A MOMENT and what a sign of what was to come! We ended naming that tree “Lucky”.

On opening day, I was able to leave work early, pick my wife up, and try to beat the rush of hunters. Thank God we were there early, because there were some hunters that had not done their off season “homework” and looked like lost kids. We had to “shoo” them off and hoped they had not bumped all the deer to the next county. We finally settled in at about 12:30 p.m. and got our bows ready. At the base of Lucky, I set up our blind. When 5:00 hit, deer were moving. It looked like a hunting show. A few does came out first and were using the trail we’d seen. Then, 30 minutes later, a shooter (130 class) finally stepped out, and wouldn’t you know it, it stopped right at a lane we had not cleared well. A few vines covered his vitals. I maintained drawn for what seemed forever. Sweat was seeping like never before, and I could almost hear my pulse! My wife ranged him for me at 22 yards – 3 yards inside my strong comfort level. He finally spotted us, new something was not right, never took that one step and blew right out of there! My heart sank. I told my wife why I couldn’t shoot and quickly got out of the blind with my pruners, and snipped those vines.

15 minutes later, more deer started coming out. We were waiting for the right one. Well the right one finally came. A trophy. A spike buck finally walked the same steps the 130″ class did. Stopped exactly on the same spot. He was about to start walking, but I threw a short grunt, he looked our way. My beautiful wife released that arrow and made a perfect shot with the Rage!!! Her first deer. Her first buck. Her first experience and understanding of the “THE FEELING”.

Later that week I had several encounters off my stand on Lucky. It was on October 8th that I harvested a beautiful buck, too – the Rage. I’ve harvested more deer since then. My wife skipped the next year because of her pregnancy, and on Feb. 24, 2010, my son Marko was born!!!!

Hunting is a big part of my life, but only because of my wife’s support. We plan to teach our son about the outdoors, and that it’s not the size of the rack that’s most important, but moments like these – that mama and I shared that led to her first bow kill, down to how we “met” Lucky the Tree. The spike she shot, her first deer, is literally……, our millennium buck. That experience was the trophy for me. That was the “wall hanger” in my heart. I will NEVER forget October 1, 2008.