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We always look forward to loading up and heading over to Illinois for the three day shotgun season, it is usually action packed and chances of harvesting a mature deer in those three days are usually pretty good.

I had high hopes of seeing a 5 year old buck I had passed last year on Dream Season and was hoping to have an opportunity at him. But as things were going for lots of us hunters in the Midwest this year things were not the norm.

We hunted Friday without seeing a mature buck and hoping that cold front that was coming the next couple days would get them on their feet. By the time Saturday afternoon rolled in we were all about froze and movement had been slow.

Sunday morning started out at 6 degrees and I believe most of the deer had found them a warm spot because they were not moving where we were setting. Then about 9 o’clock and about the time Matthew decided to have his donut I looked around behind us and said shooter- shooter. Matt thinking I was messing with him didn’t believe me but the deer was standing in a spot if he took one more step could be out of site. So I probably rushed him a little more than I should but had I not this story may have had a different ending.

Anyway when I first saw the deer I could tell he was mature and that something was just not right with him, he was hunched up and just standing there. My first thoughts were he had been shot.

As soon as Matthew said I got him I shot and the buck went down. I climbed down and went to him to be sure he had expired and that’s when I saw the arrow sticking out of his side.

This poor guy had been carrying an arrow around for a few days and was really suffering. Someone had either made a really bad shot or their arrow had gotten deflected but either way this guy was paying the price for it.

I was happy that I was able to harvest a mature buck and at the same time end this buck’s suffering. Team Ozonics had its fifth animal on the ground for Dream Season The Journey.