Hunter takes near record buck

Published 11:33 am Saturday, September 15, 2012

COURTLAND—Good things seem to happen to Chay Duffy on the anniversary of his father’s death.

Thomas Duffy holds a certificate during the 73rd annual Eastern Regional Championship at the Southampton County Fairgrounds for taking the largest deer in his class. -- GWEN ALBERS | TIDEWATER NEWS

A day he traditionally takes off from work, Duffy on Nov. 7 traveled to Southampton County, where he killed his first deer with a bow — an 11-point that scored a 210 15/16 using the Virginia scoring system.

During last weekend’s 73rd annual Eastern Regional Championship Big Game Contest at the Southampton County Fairgrounds the deer was recognized as the second all-time largest whitetail deer ever harvested with a bow in eastern Virginia among 9, 10 and 11 in points.

“I’m just very thankful and feel very fortunate,” the Virginia Beach man said. “That doesn’t happen very often. It was a matter of being in the right spot at the right time.”

The day he took the deer was a bittersweet moment for Duffy, who was hunting alone on Dick Grizzard’s farm in Boykins. Duffy at age 12 lost his 47-year-old father, Bear Duffy, after he suffered a heart attack.

“I’m pretty sure my dad had something to do with it,” he said.

An avid hunter, Bear Duffy introduced his son to the sport. Losing his father at such a young age, Chay Duffy did most of his learning on his own.

The 24-year-old earlier in the day spotted a 6-point that came from the woods.

“It turned and went the opposite way,” Duffy said. “I came out of the tree stand, went to get some breakfast and came back. I hit the doe bleep and that’s when this monster came through.”

Situated in his climbing tree stand 25 feet off the ground, he took the deer from 15 yards away.

“He ran about 15 yards and fell down, and then he ran another 20 yards,” Duffy said.

He will take the deer to Harrisonburg on Sept. 22 and 23 for the Western Regional and State championships. Any deer that placed in the top five in its category in the Eastern Regional Championships advances to the state finals.

The owner of a construction company, Duffy’s been hunting in Southampton County for five years.

“I met a guy that did trim work and he always had big antlers in the back of his truck,” Duffy said. “I said, ‘I gotta go hunting there.’ He took me as a guest.’’