Two Individuals Important To Hunting Pass Away.


Published: July - 2005

On a sadder note, we have just learned that two individuals important to the hunting community have passed away. The first is well-known western outfitter and African safari operator Ridge Taylor. One of Taylor's longtime friends, Lance Stapleton, sent us the following note in his honor: The hunting world recently lost one of its strongest advocates. On June 4, 2005, long-time outfitter and professional hunter, Ridge Taylor, passed away surrounded by his family in Jackson, Wyoming, after a valiant battle with cancer. Although Taylor spent his early years outfitting in Wyoming and Idaho, he was perhaps best known for hunting nearly two decades in Tanzania, where he produced outstanding Cape buffalo, leopard, lions and other African big game for his clients.

His clients would say that Taylor was an intense trophy hunter, totally dedicated to producing exceptional results by working `harder and smarter.' When you hunted with Ridge and Cash Taylor Safaris, you left camp before sunup and returned in the dark, and you did it day after day. He held himself and his staff to the highest standards because he felt that his clients deserved only the best. Without fanfare, he also compassionately supported schools, hospitals and gave of himself tirelessly for the Masai people.

Clients would also comment on Taylor's outspoken defense of our hunting heritage and wildlife resources, positions that led, among other things, to his calling for severe cutbacks on lion quotas in Tanzania; and very restrictive hunts and quotas for mule deer in Idaho and western Wyoming after the harsh `92-`93 winter. At the heart of Taylor's beliefs was a passionate conviction that we must defend our hunting heritage and wildlife. Above all, his passing reminds us that life is too short go hunting!

The second person to pass away this spring is 23-year-old Russell Smith, III, son of booking agent and outfitter Russ Smith. He died May 21 from head injuries sustained from an accident. We received the sad news from David Kidder of Kidder Safaris, who is close friends with Russ Smith, II.

........(continued)

 
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