Leopard Hunting Accident Involving Craig Boddington's Daughter

Discussion in 'Hunting Africa' started by AfricaHunting.com, Apr 28, 2009.

  1. Donna Boddington

    Donna Boddington New Member

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    UPDATE ON PUNKI AND RECOVERY FUND AND AUCTION

    Friends, we are happy to report that Punki's (hopefully) final operation went well. He has been released from the hospital and is home recuperating. There is still a much more minor infection at the wound sites, but it should respond to a wide-spectrum antibiotic. Punki is walking mostly on crutches, not because he has to, but because this is what the Doctors want him to do, and he's trying to follow orders. With the help of many of you, Brittany and I will continue to pay his salary through the end of the year so that he can recover fully, and of course we will see to any physical therapy needs. Truly, considering the wound, it is a marvelous recovery. His doctors are amazed by his tenacity, and this has much to do with his survival, let alone degree of recovery.

    As many of you know, we had the opportunity to auction two hunts in support of Punki, a leopard hunt with Omujeve Safaris, including life-size leopard mount and shipping from Reiser taxidermy; and a Mozambique buffalo hunt with Nyati safaris, including a new Rigby double .500 donated by myself, including a shoulder mount of the buffalo donated by Rowdy Woodson of Woods and Water Taxidermy in Austin.
    I will accompany these hunts and we will film them for "Tracks Across Africa."

    Brittany, Punki, and I wish to express our gratitude for the several generous bids received. As stated, we opened the bids yesterday, 15 July. The winning bidders were:
    For the Omujeve leopard hunt, Mr. Bill Jones.
    For the Nyati buffalo safari and rifle, Mr. David Porter. Many thanks to both of you, and I will look forward to hunting with you. And, again, thanks so much to our other bidders.

    I would also like to thank all of you who contributed to Brittany's "Punki Recovery Fund." (PO Box 33303, Granada Hills, CA 91394). All contributions, great and small, have helped and are helping get a truly great hunter back on his feet and with his dogs. Brittany and I appreciate equally the many prayers, kind words, and messages of support as well.

    I have been in this business for 35 years now, and I have always believed we hunters are among the best people in this world. The outpouring of support and concern through this unfortunate situation has validated that belief. I have also believed that we as hunters are all brothers and sisters, and the level of support the hunting community provided for an unknown hunter of a different nation, tribe, and culture validated this belief as well. I cannot thank you all enough.

    At this stage setbacks remain possible, and the full degree of Punki's recovery (and future mobility) are unknown, but his strength of character as well as body have helped immeasurably, as has the knowledge that so many people he has never met are praying for him and doing what they can to help him. I was a thousand miles away in the Zambezi Valley when I got the call on this. I was told in no uncertain terms that it was very unlikely that Punki would survive the night. We have come a long way since that terrible day, and now I truly believe that Punki will be present with his dogs when we do Bill Jones' auction hunt. The tremendous support from all of you has been a huge part of this miracle--and I want to especially thank Saeed for keeping this issue at the forefront through this long process.

    Needless to say, one must take the bad with the good on these situations. There have been a handful of negative comments and a few that were downright nasty. This is to be expected. An accident like this should not happen, and there are some thngs many of us have thought about that might have avoided it. In general, I cannot tell you how pleased and proud I am at the overwhelmingly positive response and support. Among the negatives, a couple of people suggested that it was a great deal for me because I would get "ten or a dozen" stories out of it. Yes, well, I'm a writer, and I write a lot. But I will not write specifically about this incident. I wasn't there, so I don't own it and can only report second-hand, which is not the kind of writing I do; my role has been to support my daughter and my friends, Punki and his colleagues. There are lessons here that would be valuable for us all, and I am learning that Brittany is a very good writer in her own right. So far I have discouraged her from direct discussion or writing about this. We all need a healing process, though Punki most of all. However, there may come a time when she is ready to tell the story, and there are things we can all learn.

    In the meantime, thanks again to all. I will provide occasional posts on Punki's progress, and I look forward to hunting with him again.
    With best regards and best wishes to all,
    Craig and Donna Boddington
     
  2. AfricaHunting.com

    AfricaHunting.com FOUNDER AH Ambassador

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    Craig and Donna,
    Thank you for the update on Punki's recovery, I am glad to hear that his prognosis is looking better.
    All the best,
     
  3. Ray Atkinson

    Ray Atkinson AH Enthusiast

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    Hunting dangerous game is dangerous business for hunters and for the PH and staff. The PH and staff know that in their career that they will get shot, stomped or et..it happens to all of them that stay in the business..It goes with the territory..

    Based on mr. Gs summation I believe that young Boddington acted in good faith and did the right thing, but fate delt her a bad hand..I have almost been shot by a PH in the heat of a deadly charge with a bullet 1/2 inch in a tree from my ear, that is pretty close, but he was acting in good faith to save my life and I appreciate that, fortunately I got a shot off that somehow connected and ended the whole affair..Was it a buff, a lion, an elephant, Nope it was a Black Mamba charging me and it was also the only time I figured I would not make it, but again fate stepped in but in my favor, it could have gone either way...

    The bottom line is that it happened like it did, nothing is going to change it, and talking about what should have been done or what could have happened is just gobbley goop, it changes nothing! :( which is a good reason to just let it drop.
     
  4. Big5

    Big5 AH Enthusiast

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    Ray . . . I find your above post to be a profound summation which shows a lot of insight about a truly unfortunate incident. Well said sir.
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2009
  5. Ronnie

    Ronnie New Member

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    Accidents

    May my thoughts and prayers be with all of those involved. Best wish to Punki for a full recovery. There is no one alive that doesn't have regrets of his own actions. Even with the best intentions,that some how go horribly wrong, we must all go on. Craig Boddington is one of the few people I watch,because of the respect he shows in all of his films I truly admire the man. It would be my guess that he believed this to be a safe hunt,or his daughter would not have been there.His approval says allot to me. So--To all of you that are ifing this and ifing that in times like this you might try asking God for Little help ,not to say that he hasn't helped already,but he's all ways ready and waiting to be asked.It might help to put up a picture of a chicken,somewhere that it will be seen everyday as a reminder that we all make mistakes,even Peter denied Christ three times before the cock crowed. If I ever get lucky enough to hunt with any of you and a critter has me down just shoot in amongst us, one of us needs relief!To Brittney- You didn't run ,you keyed off of your handler's shot, I would have done the same! Good luck to all ! God Bless Texas
     
  6. Ray Atkinson

    Ray Atkinson AH Enthusiast

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    Bottom line is Punki would rather have a hole in his body than a hole in the ground, that was the most likely alternative..

    I, have a great understanding of the Indigenous of Africa for an American anyway, and I will also assure you of one thing, and that is that the scars on Punki, and the lies he will tell in his village will elevate his statue considerably among his piors and the women children of the village will put him right up their with George Straight in Texas!!..In the end he will sport his wounds like a cock rooster amongst a flock of hens...:)
     
  7. agbrunson

    agbrunson New Member

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    Craig, I have had several remarkable conversations with you in years past, and marked your outstanding code of ethics; I surely feel that you passed this code to your daughter.
    I am now cured of any desire to hunt leopard behind dogs; and I'm wondering if you don't think that, knowing leopards' famous disposition, chasing them down on foot behind trackers, dog-handlers, and armed hunters might not be a poor idea. Secondly, shouldn't there have been a 12-gauge shotgun with double-ought ready for the inevitable charge?
    Regards,
    A.G. Brunson
     
  8. Big5

    Big5 AH Enthusiast

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    Prior to your engaging in a leopard hunt with hounds or on foot I congratulate you for acknowledging that for you the risk factor is too great. For by doing so your own safety and that of the others around you will not be in jeopardy by way of conducting such an activity.

    However, I find that there are in fact many risks in life that are associated with activities which greatly enhance the experience of life itself. Yet I don’t see where an activity is necessarily a poor idea simply because an accident occurred. For me the thrill of the hunt, especially when it involves dangerous game, is certainly worth the risk. I would imagine that those around me on such a hunt must feel the same way or they would not be there either.
    .
     
  9. 35bore

    35bore AH Elite

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    Craig, my prayers to you and your family, and to Punki I am glad to hear here is making a better recovery than expected.
    I have enjoyed many of your books and dvd's, I hope this will not slow Brittany down. It is plain and simple an accident, ( I read about this incident in ASG ,if I,m not mistaken) she did what she did in order to save a life, regardless of what actual circumstances were, her perception of the circumstances was completely justified. I would have done the same thing.

    In the heat of combat one does'nt know what ones capable of, correct, Respectfully, Scott
     
  10. AlSpaeth

    AlSpaeth AH Senior Member

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    Accidents happen.
    We shouldn't judge but rather hope for the best for all concerned.
    The dangers accociated with our sport are, for most of us, one of the reasons we pursue it.
    Hunters, PH's and trackers will continue to suffer injuries and sometimes death. They all know the risks.
    We will continue to do what we love. We will all die, but only a few will have lived their dreams before the Grim Reaper arrives.
    Don't make a big deal out of it just because it involved a famous name.
     
  11. tim416

    tim416 AH Veteran

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    What came out of this tragic incident has been a trust intiated by Brittany Boddington, (The Boddington Fund) that provides funds for PH's and their families in time of illness, injury and worse. This fund has grown substantially and is now overseen by Something More Safaris. Something More Safaris connects American hunters that have specialized and needed skills, dentists, physicians, etc. with native people in Africa that are in need of their services. For example, this year one of our clients, who is a dentist, will be spending a few days at the end of his safari providing free dental service to a village near the hunting concession. I cannot imagine what Brittany Boddington went through, but, to her credit, she saw through this tragedy a need, and went to work to fill this need. Here is the link to Something More Safaris and the Boddington Fund and the story behind it.
    The Boddington Fund
     
  12. Bushbuck

    Bushbuck AH Enthusiast

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    It is nice to see that something positive has come out of this trajic event. Thanks for the link of the Boddington Fund. I was pleased to read the man involved in the accident is back hunting.
     

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