“Sometimes things are just meant to happen.” That's how Eddie Wilson of Newberry described the Oct. 12 hunt when his 13-year-old nephew shot a potential record-book buck while sitting on his lap – at 600 yards! 

The nephew, Bryson Longshore, may be only 13, but he's no neophyte when it comes to hunting big game. He's taken whitetails in South Carolina, Texas and Canada, and he shot two bears in Canada, last year with his bow. But even many adult hunters would have second thoughts about shooting a buck standing 600 yards away.

Not Longshore. The Newberry Middle Schooler lives to hunt and he has a dead-eye with a deer rifle.

But before he took him hunting, Longshore’s dad, David, took him to his shop and told him to look at the antlers of deer he had already killed.

“You've already killed deer like this,” he said. “There is no need to kill any more with antlers like this.”

David Longshore put his son in a stand in front of an extra-long shooting lane shortly before 7 a.m. that first Saturday of rifle season and told him his uncle would join him later. When Wilson arrived, he had to stop while a buck crossed the lane. After settling in, the buck reappeared, but it was too small to shoot.

An hour or so later, another buck came out about 700 yards away and walked up a hill. Then a doe appeared, and about a minute later the big buck strolled out.

“I had killed a deer at that spot a year ago, and I told Bryson it was 600 yards,” said Wilson, who dialed the scope up on his 7mm Ultra-Mag and pulled Longshore up onto his lap. The deer was crossing the lane, then it turned left, Wilson said.

“I whistled, and he threw his head up.”

Longshore clicked the safety off and squeezed the trigger.

“He dropped like a sack of rocks,” Wilson said.

The buck weighed 179 pounds and sported a balanced 8-point rack with a 20 1/2-inch inside spread. The right main beam was 22 inches and the left main beam was 23 inches. Both G3s were 7 inches long. The right G2 was 8 1/2 inches and the left G2 was 8 inches. Both brow tines were four inches. Wilson estimated the deer was 3 1/2 years old and has no doubt it will score high enough to make the state record book.

“He is very accomplished when it comes to shooting deer,” Wilson said. “I started taking him to the deer stand when he was three years old. He knows the gun has the ability, but he also knows you have to hold it steady.”

While he has steady hands when he has a deer in the crosshairs, Longshore said that is about the only thing steady about him.

“When I put the scope on a deer my heart is pumping,” he said. “When you look though the scope and see the deer, and then shoot it and the deer drops, that is just outstanding. It's crazy.”