Hand gets record alligator

Published 3:06 pm Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Decatur County resident Randy Hand set a new state record Sunday night when he killed a 13-foot, 9-inch alligator weighing 692 pounds on Lake Seminole.

John Adams, a wildlife technician 3 with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources Game and Fish Division’s Wildlife Management Area office in Thomasville, measured and verified the record Monday at the Buck Barn in Bainbridge.

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He said the old record length alligator of 13 feet, 6 inches was harvested by Shane Wilson on Lake Blackshear in 2008.

Hand, who had obtained the alligator hunting permit from the Game and Fish Division, said he had extra incentive to find and harvest one this year.

He explained that his brother, Melvin Hand, who passed away recently, had always wanted to get an alligator, but he never did.

RANDY HAND, RIGHT, stands by the record 13-foot, 9-inch, 692-pound alligator he killed Sunday night on Lake Seminole. With him is his friend, Mack Young, who helped bring the big prize to shore.|Joe Crine

“Killing the alligator gave me pleasant memories of my brother,” he said. “I got it in honor and memory of him.”

On the boat with him when he killed the big prize was his friend, Mack Young of Marianna, Fla.

“Mack helped me tie the alligator to the side of my 13-foot long boat and bring it to shore at Jack Wingate’s dock,” he said. “We put in at Horseshoe Bend just before first dark and got the gator around 8:25 p.m.

“I first harpooned him in the tail. He went under water, but when he came back up, I threw a treble hook around him. I then harpooned him for a second time and shot him with a 44-magnum power stick.”