posted on March 02, 2014 09:23
By Mike Handley
It's a pretty safe bet that he wasn't thinking about deer hunters when George Will, the Pulitzer-winning newspaper and magazine columnist, once said "The nice part about being a pessimist is that you are constantly being either proven right or pleasantly surprised."
Dave Shedron, a 61-year-old volunteer firefighter and bowyer in Walton, Ind., won't argue with that.
So convinced last season that the buck at the top of his Most Wanted list was seconds away from slinking - or streaking - out of his life, Dave ignored the don't-look-at-the-rack rule and gawked.
"I was so sure my hunt was done, that it wasn't going to happen, that I began counting points for my big-one-that-got-away story," he laughed.
But the story didn't end the way Dave thought it would. He wound up skewering the state-record buck (by recurve). The 15-pointer is also No. 6 in the world.
Dave began hunting with a recurve, an old Ben Pearson model, when he was 16 years old, and he got his first buck with it the next year. He's since arrowed between 75 and 100 whitetails.
"I don't see hunting with one as a disadvantage," he says. "But I'm not a purist or anything. I shoot (self-fletched) Easton carbon arrows."
He began building his own bows in the mid-1990s, mostly out of necessity, since buying a new one was beyond his budget. He's been building them ever since, and he now owns Birdsong Archery.
Dave and his career-best whitetail, which has a composite score of 188 3/8 inches, will be one of Rack magazine's covers this fall.