The 15-foot long alligator that Mandy and John Stokes killed is believed to be the largest that has ever been legally killed by an Alabama hunter. They had some help from Mandy's brother-in law, Kevin Jenkins, and his two children, Savannah and Parker.
The first attempt to weigh the animal failed because the winch which was used to hoist it broke, but Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries biologists finally determined the alligator weighed 1,011.5 pounds.
The team's first try to kill the alligator by shooting it with a 20-gauge shotgun at the base of the neck was unsuccessful. "All it did was make this gator mad," Mandy Stokes told Al.com. "Fear had taken hold at this point."
After briefly considering giving up on taking out the massive beast, the team decided to try again with the shotgun. The second time was the charm.
"If it wasn't for the grace of God, we never could have done it," Stokes said. "At one time during this whole thing, I honestly thought, you know what; we didn't sign up for that."
The Stokes are still deciding what to do with the alligator's carcass.