Good-luck daughter yields second trophy buck for SUPER DREW

Special season was opened when quota wasn’t met; season closes Sunday, Nov. 21

Andrew LaFleur III has a secret weapon. It’s not a gun. It’s not a special scent or camo pattern. It’s not even a technique.

No, LaFleur’s secret weapon is his 8-year-old daughter Karly Bree LaFleur, who proved she is better than a horseshoe on Nov. 13 when she attracted a huge 11-point estimated to score in the low 150s to a stand in which she and her father were sitting.

“Two years ago, she was with me when I killed a 10-point that scored 141 and some change,” said the elder LaFleur, who goes by “SUPER DREW” on the forum.

More photos of the 11-point, including one with daughter Karly, can be found on our deer forum. Click here to see photos of the two trophy bucks LaFleur has shot while hunting with Karly.

LeFleur’s latest trophy came after some pre-season preparations to a stand site from which the Ragley hunter killed a 130-class 9-point last year while hunting his lease in Merryville.

“I cleared me lanes during the summer and put up some ladder stands to hunt with my daughter,” LaFleur explained.

He also put out cameras, but failed to capture a single good buck.

“The cameras I’ve got are pretty crappy, so they take about five pictures and the batteries are dead,”  LaFleur said. “I got pictures of some button bucks, a hog and a possum.”

But he still headed for the stand early on Nov. 13, after rousing Karly from bed at about 4 a.m.

“My daughter is not a big fan of hunting all day, so we’ve got a deal: We hunt until noon, and if she behaves herself, I let her get a DVD from the Red Box and she can get some candy,” LaFleur said.

As usual, the pair stopped during the hour-long drive to the lease and shared some breakfast.

Once at the lease, which doesn’t follow any kind of quality deer management scheme, the team pulled on camo, sprayed each other down with scent eliminator and eased to the stand 200 yards away.

“Once we got about 80 yards from the stand, we sprayed doe-in-heat (scent) on our boots for the last little bit of the walk,” LaFleur said.

They settled into the stand about 20 minutes before daylight, and their routine settled in. First, Karly took a short nap, waking up as the sun was brightening the lanes.

“We were watching little critters and birds flying around,” LaFleur said. “We weren’t seeing any deer.”

Karly spent a bit of time looking through her father’s binoculars, and then they shared some chocolate chip cookies about 7:15 a.m.

“Not much is going on,” LaFleur said. “We’re just king of enjoying the time in the woods.”

About 30 minutes later, LaFleur heard a twig snap, and he tells his daughter to be quiet.

“Immediately, she turned to me and said, ‘What did you hear? What did you hear?” he said.

LaFleur quiets here down, and starts watching the lane to his left, in the direction the sound had come.

Karly settled into her father’s left shoulder, and LaFleur finally took an inventory of his other lanes.

“I looked back, and there some grass on the edge of the lane,” he said. “I thought, ‘Those branches look funny moving like that.”

Of course, he wasn’t seeing branches.

“He just stepped out in that lane, and I thought, ‘Oh my God!’” LaFleur said. “I grabbed Karly by the arm and said, ‘Get up real slow.’”

Karly’s head snapped around, and she couldn’t help herself.

“She said, ‘There’s a deer, Daddy!’” LaFleur chuckled.

His rifle was still leaning against the railing of the stand as the buck eased farther out. And then it turned and looked right at the stand.

“He knew the stand was there, and I guess he was just trying to see if anything was in it,” LaFleur said. “We were like stone.”

That’s when the hunter got a pretty good look at the buck’s head gear, and his heart went into overdrive.

“All I could see was like it is on the movies – that beam of light came down and it was, like, ‘Whhhhaaaa!’” LaFleur said. “I swear that’s what it looked like.”

When the deer put its head down, LaFleur quickly grabbed his rifle while Karly slowly leaned back to provide room for her father to place the rifle on the stand’s left shooting rail.

“I told her to cover her ears, and she did that slowly, calmly,” LaFleur said.

The buck had begun walking again, so LaFleur did the only thing he’s ever found to stop a deer.

“I went, ‘Hey!’ and he stopped,” he explained. “I put (the cross hairs) right behind the shoulder and squeezed off a shot.

“I knew I had made a good shot.”

The buck took off straight away from the stand while LaFleur chambered another round and frantically looked for the deer in the scope.

“I was about to squeeze off another shot, and he wobbled to right and wobbled to the left and then flipped over,” he said. “My daughter was like, ‘Oh, yeah!’”

The buck never got up again. After a few minutes of trying to keep Karly from jumping out of the stand, the celebration really began.

“We’re both shaking. There were probably a few tears going on,” LaFleur said.

And, after ensuring the rifle safety was engaged, LaFleur helped his daughter out of the stand to go claim the trophy.

But he didn’t see it right way.

“I was looking in the grass on the edge of the lane, telling her, ‘Here’s blood. It went this way,’” LaFleur said. “She said, ‘Daddy, he’s right there.’”

The buck was in the lane, and LaFleur could see one long main beam sticking up above the stout body.

“I was, like, ‘Holy crap!’” he said.

He was stunned because, even though he had experienced a moment of euphoria in the stand LaFleur really hadn’t focused on the rack.

“I kind of saw the horns for the second when I shot at him, but I don’t focus on the antlers when I’m shooting at a deer,” he said. “I can’t do that.”

The buck had 11 points arrayed around the main beams. It has been estimated to go in the low 150s – and three tines had been broken off.

While he’ll be proud to put it on the wall next to his other two trophies, what LaFleur is proudest of is that he shared another great hunt with Karly.

“That makes it a million times better, just having her with me when I killed it,” he said. “Just sharing it with my daughter made it so special.”

Post photos and stories of your big kill on our deer forum. If you aren’t already a registered member of this site, click here to get started today!

About Andy Crawford 863 Articles
Andy Crawford has spent nearly his entire career writing about and photographing Louisiana’s hunting and fishing community. While he has written for national publications, even spending four years as a senior writer for B.A.S.S., Crawford never strayed far from the pages of Louisiana Sportsman. Learn more about his work at www.AndyCrawford.Photography.