David Greteman has been developing the acreage surrounding his rural Carroll home for more than 12 years, and today it provides cover for a variety of habitat, including deer and pheasant. The view through the south bay windows makes for a great place to watch wildlife. <span style="font-size: xx-small;"><em>Daily Times Herald photo by Jeff Storjohann</em></span>
David Greteman has been developing the acreage surrounding his rural Carroll home for more than 12 years, and today it provides cover for a variety of habitat, including deer and pheasant. The view through the south bay windows makes for a great place to watch wildlife. Daily Times Herald photo by Jeff Storjohann
Thursday, October 18, 2012

A prized deer that locals have dubbed the “Walmart Buck” will reach a national television audience next week when the hunting story of Carroll resident Dave Greteman and son Joel airs on The Sportsman Channel.

The deer made headlines last year for its immense rack — a 231-pointer that ranks fourth in the state among non-typical antlered deer that have been felled with shotguns, and ranks 12th among those shot with any weapon. Equally impressive was the interesting story that accompanied the hunt.

Word of a deer with massive antlers spotted near Walmart on Carroll’s west side spread slowly among hunters and other residents in the months that preceded Iowa’s shotgun season in December.

People parked their cars on roads near the store in the late afternoons to glimpse the animal that people called the “Walmart Buck” or the “Walmart Deer” or the “Walmart Legend.”

A bowhunter had spotted the buck on Greteman’s nearby land in October, and an automated camera that hunters use to scout deer snapped a shot of the behemoth.

On Dec. 3, the Gretemans hid in makeshift huts of cornstalk bales and waited with their shotguns.

Joel, a 2006 Kuemper Catholic grad who now lives in Des Moines, shot the buck first, and his dad fired a shot to help kill it.

Dozens of people stopped at Dave Greteman’s house to see the deer soon after the hunt. Others phoned him for private views in the weeks that followed. He estimates that about 100 people have seen it so far, but many more will. Greteman has paid someone to reproduce the antlers, and it’s possible that one of the reproductions will hang at the Conservation Education Center at Swan Lake State Park on the city’s southeast side.

Joel Greteman gets credit for the kill. In October, a national hunting magazine, North American Whitetail, published a six-page feature of his story.

Iowa is renowned for its whitetail deer. The famous “Albia Deer” that was shot by a 15-year-old in 2003 scored 307 points. It’s the third-best rack ever recorded.

The world-record rack — found on a dead buck in Missouri in 1981 — scored about 334.