ST. PAUL, Mo. - The opening day of deer season wasn't starting out well for hunter Tim Phillips.
After sitting in his tree stand all morning and not getting a chance to shoot at anything, Phillips decided to take a break, eat some breakfast and head back out to the stand that same afternoon.
It was a good thing he did.
"I decided to hunt that afternoon and the monster buck walked out just before dark," Phillips told KSDK-TV. "My heart was racing when I realized it was him."
That "him" Phillips is referring to is a monster 39-point buck that Phillips says he's been chasing after for the past five years.
"I knew he was out there, but had to wait for the right time," Phillips said.
That time was Saturday afternoon, Nov. 11. With the buck in his sights, and a 30/30 in his hand, Phillips managed to calm himself and make the perfect shot with his rifle.
Upon further examination, the buck had 39 points counting the ring hooks, and, according to Phillips, had an official score of approximately 243, just shy of a world record. The monster buck killed by Phillips was estimated to be around 8 years old.
"Locals have captured hundreds of photos of this particular deer on their trail cameras dating all the way back to 2012," Phillips told KSDK-TV. "I definitely wasn't the only person who was hoping to see him."
Phillips said he plans to have the deer mounted and he will donate the meat to Share the Harvest, a statewide program sponsored by the Missouri Department of Conservation that helps feed the hungry.