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Although we descended from hunters, The Ts are not a hunting family. This evening, we were on our way to pick up oldest son from school after his soccer game and grab pizza when less than 1/2 mile from our house, a deer jumped out. We swerved but it was too late. The deer ran into the truck’s tire and was struck down. Down, but not dead. It was clear that this deer was not getting up and running away. It was bleeding, we (at least my son and I) were crying. What to do? The right thing in Tom’s mind was to put the poor thing out of its misery. Unfortunately however, shooting a deer (even with a handgun to put it down when it is already dying) is not allowed. Like I said, we are not hunters and had no interest in the meat and were not looking to take the deer, but rather give it a humane end to its suffering. A call to the game warden informed us that shooting it (as I said) was totally out of the question. My husband was told that they would dispatch someone who would come in about 2 hours. I left in my vehicle to pick up poor oldest son, who had no idea what was going on and on my way back, (about 1/2 hour later) the deer was conspicuously absent from the side of the road where the incident occurred. Highly unlikely that the game warden got there that fast, since they seemed in no hurry on the phone, so most likely someone passing by who is a hunter and had a gun, put it down and took it away.
The evening was totally stressful for all of us since no one really knew what to do, but knew that leaving an animal suffering on the side of the road wasn’t it.
Prior to writing this post, I looked it up. Believe it or not, insurance companies have listed the odds of hitting a deer in each of the 50 states as reported in the New York Times. As you might imagine, Hawaii has the lowest likelihood of hitting a deer with your vehicle (1 in 16,624) and West Virginia has the highest (1 in 57). Vermont is 1 in 133.
Sadly, tonight we and the deer became part of those statistics. We fared far better than the deer. Luckily, none of us were hurt.