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Dennis “Pop Pop” Lundy made his annual trip to Illinois from New York to spend time with family.

This trip was special for Pop Pop as his son Sean had plans to take him hunting. And extra special for the whole family as the did not know if Pop Pop would be able to make the annual hunting trip due to medical issues. Sean said “We didn’t know if he’d be here, so just having Pop Pop here with us this year is very special”

Before heading to the woods, Pop Pop told Sean he wanted to make him proud and shoot a respectable deer. Sean reinforced the fact that he could have any deer on the farm. Sean told Pop Pop “If a deer gets you excited, then it’s big enough to shoot.”

They were set up on the edge of a field overlooking a radish patch on opening morning. Sean had the cameras set up and ready to capture the moment. Soon after the sun rose, some young 1.5-year-old bucks cruising through.

Pop Pop pointed out a deer walking through the timber and when he stepped out into the food plot Pop Pop grabbed Sean’s knee saying “This is a giant!” Sean couldn't help but to chuckle at how excited his seventy-year-old father was getting.

The buck stepped back into the timber and Pop Pop asked Sean to grunt. After three quick grunts, the buck emerged from the timber and began walking right toward the stand.

As the deer came closer, Pop Pop asked Sean if the deer was big enough to shoot. Sean reiterated that “You can shoot any deer on the farm. If it gets you going then it is a shooter.”

Pop Pop raised his muzzleloader as the deer walked into the radish patch and turned broadside for a second. Sean stopped the deer with a grunt and he heard the click of the safety come off.

The deer began to quarter towards them as Pop Pop squeezed the trigger. When the smoke from the muzzleloader cleared the buck was running but definitely hit. The buck ran about 75 yards into the timber before Pop Pop and Sean watched him fall.

The celebration erupted in the stand with father and son. As they put their hands on the deer, Pop Pop became emotional and asked Sean if the deer was big enough and if he did ok. Sean said “Just having my dad with me in the woods was reward enough no matter the size of the deer or even if we killed one. The fact that this buck is the biggest Pop Pop has ever killed means more to me than any deer I could shoot this year. Seeing a man in his seventies get so excited shows that because you get older doesn’t mean you don’t get jacked up." Great to see we never lose the excitement that can only come from hunting.

After dressing the deer they headed straight to the taxidermist. Although some bigger bucks were being brought in the shop, Sean said it was great to see other hunters asking to hear the story and congratulating Pop Pop. They made Pop Pop feel like he had killed a record buck.

Respectfully so, because he had. It was a record for Pop Pop. And a personal record is the one that really matters.

Gear used:

Leupold

Nomad

Tenzing

Reconyx

BioLogic

Scent Crusher