COPYRIGHT 2009. WHITETAIL MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATES. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
Whitetail Management Associates of Greater Pittsburgh
RESPONSIBLE STEWARDSHIP FOR THE FUTURE OF OUR WILD RESOURCES
We promised Zach a chance this season for a buck and he proved for the second time to be a natural born hunter. Zach chose to hunt the evening since an all day hunt seemed to be too exhausting for his body. Even though Mother Nature delivered a constant 30 mph wind, the weather had little effect on Zach's spirit or desire to harvest a mature whitetail buck.
The day was overcast, and with the heavy winds the deer's movements were made with cautious steps since they seemed to lose their keen sense of smell. Knowing the weather would put a damper on deer movement, Zach's hunting buddies devised a plan on how to accomplish a successful hunt for Zach. They put their plan into action and stuck close to Zach's side until his dream buck was safely in the back of Zane's pickup truck.
Early in the hunt, Zach had a great opportunity to harvest a nice 4 point buck, but it seemed that his step dad and best hunting buddy Bob Mendel had bigger hopes for him. Bob persuaded Zach to pass on the smaller buck and wait for something bigger to come along. Reluctantly Zach listened, hoping that he wasn't making the wrong decision. He let the smaller buck walk and waited on a larger buck that Bob could see through his binoculars some distance away. Bob could see that this buck was following the same path as the smaller buck, and hoped he would stay on course.
After what seemed like forever, the buck made his way to the same spot as the young buck earlier, and Zach finally had his dream buck in sight. Zach knew what to do, and he settled his crosshairs right behind the shoulder of the mature 8 point. Then, Zach slowly turned to Bob and whispered "Do you think I can make the shot?" With the confidence of a proud hunting partner, he whispered back to Zach "Go ahead and take the shot."
After a quick 50 yard sprint Zach's dream buck laid motionless amongst the freshly fallen leaves and acorns. Zach's face seemed to glow with a sense of accomplishment as you heard shouts of excitement and fulfillment coming from Zach's chosen hunting area.
We would like to thank Bob and the Boyce Park boys for letting us share this hunt with Zach and them; we'll always remember the smiles and joy that Zach was able to share with us, and he will always be in our prayers at the end of each day. Thanks Zach, God has blessed you with the ability to touch other lives in a special way, one that we will never forget.
A personal note to Zach from Joe McCluskey Jr., WMA President:
Zach with his "Boyce Park Boyz" (L-R): Dan Pringle, Zane Wallace, Bob Mendel (Zach's stepdad) Chip Hanlan, Chip Foradas, Steve Holmes
The BUCKMASTER and his men!
Zach had such an amazing day with all of you. I've never seen him so happy and have such a sense of accomplishment. He never got to be like all of the other kids and yesterday he was able to have that and more. And also...get to share it with such a great group of people.
We will never be able to thank all of you enough. God may have blessed us all yesterday but without you and Whitetail Management none of this would have ever happened.
Zach wanted to say something as well...
The hunt was really great. It felt so great to get my first buck. Thank you Joe for setting all of this up for me and also I would like to thank Mark for the bow.
Bob, Elaine and Zach
A note from Zach and his Mom & Dad...
Zach - If you ever need anything… from a friend to talk with or a hunting partner to go hunting with please feel free to contact me and just maybe God will give us time and the opportunity to share more time together. Zach, all my life I believed I was born under a special hunter star and no matter where I went into the woods good things always seemed to happen to me. Spending the time that we've spent together this season I realize that I wasn't the only hunter born under that star, and you and I will always share that star together no matter where our paths may take us. From this day on, when I enter the woods to hunt you will be with me both in thought and prayer. Thanks for giving an old man a new appreciation on how to enjoy the things we love so much and seem to take for granted. Good luck and God bless…