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Breaking News: Is Mitch Rompola onto the Next World Record?

April 13, 2006
Breaking News: Is Mitch Rompola onto the Next World Record? - 11

Rompolaxerox I received this letter in the mail yesterday, along with this photocopy of what the anonymous writer claims is the new world-record whitetail. Here’s the letter in its entirety, unabridged:

The next world record is alive and well!!! This 8x8 clean typical 16 point is another contender from the same place the GIANT TYPICAL buck was taken in 1998…Michigan! This buck will easily outscore that Canadian buck of 213+. Experts say it will easily net about 230 to 240+ typical. All your so-called experts were way off except one guy mentioned Michigan.

Also the same bowhunter that shot that Monster Buck in Michigan is watching this buck. Could lighting (sic) strike twice?!!!

The mystery writer is referencing my article “Nice Rack” in the March Outdoor Life, in which only one of our experts (Keith Balfourd of Boone and Crockett Club) predicted that the next top typical could come out of Michigan.

April_13_06
The “same bowhunter” watching the buck is the infamous Mitch Rompola of Traverse City, MI. Back in November 1998 Rompola claimed to have killed the new record (218 inches) with his bow (remember this photo?) What has ensued over the last 8 years is bizarre (click here for a good Rompola archive). It never ceases to amaze me how a whitetail with a huge rack makes reasonable people do and say stupid things. A few highlights (or lowlights):

• Supposedly because of a nasty falling out with the B&C club, Rompola, 57, refused to have the buck  officially scored, thus giving up hundreds of thousands of dollars in endorsements, speaking fees, etc.
• People screamed, “Proof he’s a kook, liar and a cheat--the buck is illegal or a fake!”
• Friends and fans said Rompola is a private guy and a hard DIY hunter, and he just wanted to get out of the limelight and get the media off his back. 
• In 1999, 3 B&C certified scorers examined the rack and claim it’s legit.
• In 2000, Rompola reportedly signed a contract with a seed company that represents Milo Hanson, who shot the current record buck (213) in Saskatchewan in 1983. Rompola agrees never to have his rack officially scored. Since the Rompola buck could never be deemed the new record, the seed company and Hanson could continue to claim the top deer and make money off it.
• That move baffled fans and skeptics alike. "I never would have signed it," Milo Hanson was quoted as saying. “If he (Rompola) signed it, then something is terribly wrong.”

Go to any bowhunting forum today and you’ll still see Rompola threads, with fans and doubters hotly debating the hunter and his buck.

Enter this mystery letter sent to me, which was postmarked in Traverse City, MI. Could the writer be the great hunter himself? One of his crazed fans? A hoax?

And what about the buck?  Hell of a rack, but I don’t see 230 inches. That’s one thick, fat deer—pen raised and on protein-pellet steroids maybe? BTW, the writer sent 3 flash photocopies of the buck, close ups of the rack at various angles. Would an old, wild deer pose for a trail cam like that?

If anybody has seen this “record buck” or has knowledge of its existence let me know. Real or fake? Is old Mitch legit? Is he poised to rise out of the ashes like a Phoenix and strike again this fall and make a mint this time? Are we ready for another fiasco like that? What do you think?

Comments (11)

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from hanback wrote 8 years 13 weeks ago

Friday, 10:15 AM--I'm getting some reports (and some pictures)that claim this letter and photocopy were indeed a hoax, the products of a crazed Rompola fan. I'm furiously trying to collaborate things and will make a new post as soon as I can.

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from Todd wrote 8 years 13 weeks ago

According to Daryl Ratajczak a wildlife biologist with the Tennessee Wildlife Resources ageny that is a real deer that was photographed by a trail cam Tennessee. Here is what he said about te photo"That deer is a Tennessee deer (and it was a "real" deer too). It was captured on a trail cam a few years back and more than likely died of natural causes. To think something that big lived and died without anyone ever laying hands on it. It sure is amazing how older aged deer become "ghosts" in the woods."Great buck no matter where the photo was taken but I don't see 230" either.Todd Ratermannwww.southeasternoutdoors.comwww.outdoors-411.com

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from Mark wrote 8 years 13 weeks ago

Mike,Looking at the color photo made me recall articles and photos of skeleton relics of the Ice Age Irish Deer [or is it: Elk]. This animal supposively grew 100-lb antlers and survived until about 500 BC in Central Europe. This buck in the color photo, the rack has a resemblance to this ancient deer/elk to my eye.MAYBE the brute's a throw back or we're coming into SciFi style desolation.We can only hope, Later.

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from hanback wrote 8 years 13 weeks ago

Mark: With this weird story, who knows? I sorta like the old BW gray screen look.

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from Cory Sutton wrote 8 years 13 weeks ago

This deer was taken by trail-cam in Tennessee..Can Rompola and his cronies just go away? He/They already put a black eye on deer hunting.Thanks

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from lloyd geralds wrote 7 years 33 weeks ago

that is one big buck there in that picture I wich I seen one that big in my life

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from rambone wrote 7 years 31 weeks ago

If i shot that goD$*n buck i would let the world know about it, why wasnt it on tv?I think politics should be removed from sports .

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from Brian wrote 7 years 17 weeks ago

i have seen alot of big deer. This is an amazing animal wherever,whoever. To me these days the trophy sport has turned into something crazy. To me hunting is something sacred,a pleasure,fun. What i have seen about alot of this stuff, if I ever kill a monster like this I think I would keep it to myself. I have a friend who has two monnnnster bucks and refuses to have it scored now i know why...

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from Big Marc wrote 6 years 41 weeks ago

All I will say is if the deer is real and in an area that Mitch hunts, He will kill it. His track record of Scouting, Hunting and Killing Trophy Bucks speaks for itself!

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from the great white hunter wrote 6 years 39 weeks ago

That deer is still out there, i have a picture of it along with another monster. I have bagged only one monster but I've been tracking that thing for 2 years it won't let me get a shot

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from joe reynolds wrote 6 years 35 weeks ago

i personaly think that rompola is legit, some people are just not wired in a sense to handle media, cameras, attention , i do believe posibly the next world record could come from michigan , we have a cabin in the u.p. 17 miles off of us-2 in the middle of nowhere cedar swamps, dense forest i believe that there are deer here that have not even seen a human , so--- definetly posible

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from joe reynolds wrote 6 years 35 weeks ago

i personaly think that rompola is legit, some people are just not wired in a sense to handle media, cameras, attention , i do believe posibly the next world record could come from michigan , we have a cabin in the u.p. 17 miles off of us-2 in the middle of nowhere cedar swamps, dense forest i believe that there are deer here that have not even seen a human , so--- definetly posible

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from the great white hunter wrote 6 years 39 weeks ago

That deer is still out there, i have a picture of it along with another monster. I have bagged only one monster but I've been tracking that thing for 2 years it won't let me get a shot

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Big Marc wrote 6 years 41 weeks ago

All I will say is if the deer is real and in an area that Mitch hunts, He will kill it. His track record of Scouting, Hunting and Killing Trophy Bucks speaks for itself!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Brian wrote 7 years 17 weeks ago

i have seen alot of big deer. This is an amazing animal wherever,whoever. To me these days the trophy sport has turned into something crazy. To me hunting is something sacred,a pleasure,fun. What i have seen about alot of this stuff, if I ever kill a monster like this I think I would keep it to myself. I have a friend who has two monnnnster bucks and refuses to have it scored now i know why...

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from rambone wrote 7 years 31 weeks ago

If i shot that goD$*n buck i would let the world know about it, why wasnt it on tv?I think politics should be removed from sports .

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from lloyd geralds wrote 7 years 33 weeks ago

that is one big buck there in that picture I wich I seen one that big in my life

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from hanback wrote 8 years 13 weeks ago

Mark: With this weird story, who knows? I sorta like the old BW gray screen look.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mark wrote 8 years 13 weeks ago

Mike,Looking at the color photo made me recall articles and photos of skeleton relics of the Ice Age Irish Deer [or is it: Elk]. This animal supposively grew 100-lb antlers and survived until about 500 BC in Central Europe. This buck in the color photo, the rack has a resemblance to this ancient deer/elk to my eye.MAYBE the brute's a throw back or we're coming into SciFi style desolation.We can only hope, Later.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Todd wrote 8 years 13 weeks ago

According to Daryl Ratajczak a wildlife biologist with the Tennessee Wildlife Resources ageny that is a real deer that was photographed by a trail cam Tennessee. Here is what he said about te photo"That deer is a Tennessee deer (and it was a "real" deer too). It was captured on a trail cam a few years back and more than likely died of natural causes. To think something that big lived and died without anyone ever laying hands on it. It sure is amazing how older aged deer become "ghosts" in the woods."Great buck no matter where the photo was taken but I don't see 230" either.Todd Ratermannwww.southeasternoutdoors.comwww.outdoors-411.com

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from hanback wrote 8 years 13 weeks ago

Friday, 10:15 AM--I'm getting some reports (and some pictures)that claim this letter and photocopy were indeed a hoax, the products of a crazed Rompola fan. I'm furiously trying to collaborate things and will make a new post as soon as I can.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Cory Sutton wrote 8 years 13 weeks ago

This deer was taken by trail-cam in Tennessee..Can Rompola and his cronies just go away? He/They already put a black eye on deer hunting.Thanks

0 Good Comment? | | Report

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