I have written about this before (in 2010), but I think it is worth repeating:
"Buck" is a common island word meaning pal or friend, and is used as a
form of greeting, typically between men, as in the expression, "Hey
Buck, how's it going?" (Buck is undoubtedly of ancient origin, from the
word"bucca" (male goat) and "buc" (male deer), that in 18th century
England came to mean "dashing fellow.") To my knowledge, Buck is a term unique to Ocracoke Island.
"Puck" is used locally as
a diminutive of Buck, and is generally used to address women, and
children, or by women to address men...and sometimes implies a degree of
impishness. In Shakespeare Puck is a jovial, but pranksterish wanderer
of the night. I think it's a good guess that the early British settlers
on Ocracoke brought with them both terms, Buck & Puck.
This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of Ocracoke Lodge No. 194,
Independent Order of Odd Fellows. You can read the Newsletter here: https://www.villagecraftsmen.com/island-inn-lodge-no-194-independent-order-odd-fellows/