Rural Missouri - November 2013 - (Page 36)
N E I G H B O R S
The most dangerous game
Missouri man bags African Dangerous Seven
by Kile Brewer
ameron resident Weston
Scott realized late in life
that he was and had
always been a hunter.
So, after a lifetime of adventures
outside the realm of hunting, he
and his wife, Loretta, headed to
the South African bush in search of
some of the world's most dangerous game.
Weston was born in Galt where
his grandfather had been the
country doctor for 47 years. His
family moved to southern California when he was young, and he
was raised there until eventually
attending El Camino junior college
in Englewood. Then his mother
"My mother had cancer one
year, so I dropped out," Weston
says. "Eventually, I went into the
ministry at the Minnesota Bible
College and then went to Lincoln
Christian Seminary in Lincoln.
Then I went into the Army as a
chaplain, where I got a commission in 1965."
Weston then attended the U.S.
Army chaplain school and was
assigned to Fort Leonard Wood.
"I did the services in a small
Weston Scott stands in front of the hide of
church there," Weston says. "There
"My wife said, 'You know, I don't
were seats for 200 people. Evenknow how long you're gonna live,
tually, the congregation grew to
but would you like to do some travelabout 345, and it was standing
ling?' I said, 'Yeah, that'd be ﬁne.' She
room only. I decided it would be a
said, 'What about Africa?' I said, 'You,
good idea to start a choir, and then
wanna go to Africa, like on a safari?'
210 people joined. I had the largShe said, 'Yeah.' Well, she was talkest choir in the Army."
ing about a photo safari, and I didn't
Weston built a loyal congregaknow it and I said, 'Let's go!'"
tion before getting handed a new
He began planning for the pair's
ﬁrst safari and the ﬁrst hunt of his life.
"After Fort Leonard Wood, I
"I got about 14 or 15 animals over
went to Vietnam," Weston says.
He was married
there that time and I got hooked,"
just 17 days before
Weston says. "Nobody ever asked
me if I'd like to go hunting, so I
being deployed and
ended up serving two
never knew I liked to go huntCameron
tours. But after 1970, he
ing, and I went through my
was back in the United
After that, there was
States. In 1973, he was
no turning back. Weston
reassigned to Panama.
began planning the next
After his Army career,
safari almost as soon as he
Weston moved into real
returned from Africa. He
estate and now lives in Cameron.
would work awhile, save some money
It wasn't until after a major heart
and then head back to his professurgery that his African adventures
sional hunter in South Africa where
would be considered.
the game was waiting.
"I had a ﬁve-artery bypass about
After a while, he wasn't just hunt17 years ago," says the Farmers'
ing for any old animals, he was after
Electric Cooperative member.
a zebra that he killed on safari in Africa.
the Dangerous Seven: the African
elephant, black rhinoceros, Cape buffalo, lion, leopard, Nile crocodile and
"After the second or third safari,
I said, 'Well, what about the dangerous game, that's kind of interesting,'"
Weston says. "I got three out of the
Big Five in 2007. And then I ended
up getting all of the Dangerous Seven
animals eventually. I had eight different safaris over a period of about ﬁve
or six years."
During those trips, Weston won
several coveted awards from Safari
Club International, an organization
that promotes hunting and conservation in Africa.
Some of his records included a Nile
crocodile that measured more than
14 feet from head to tail, the biggest
taken in South Africa that year. He
also bagged an eland, which is the
world's largest species of antelope,
that weighed more than 2,000 pounds
and had 39.5-inch horns, which was a
world record for a while.
"When they were curing the horns
in salt at the taxidermy shop, local
people and hunters were coming
from all around just to see the size
of the horns," Weston says. "It's the
largest animal in Africa that I got as
far as records go."
As size goes, his largest kill was
an 8,000-pound hippopotamus,
which also was the best tasting
animal that he ever shot. "I like to
try the stuff, I wanna know what
it tastes like," Weston says. "That
hippo was delicious. You'd think it
would be blubbery and soft, but no,
that thing was ﬁrm."
Though he enjoyed the hippo, it
wasn't his favorite meat, however.
"The best meat I have ever had
over there was crocodile," Weston
says. "When I got my leopard, the
professional hunter took me out in
town to eat, and one of the kabob
things that we had on the skewer
was crocodile. Oh was it good. It
was kind of ﬂaky, between chicken
and frog legs."
Now that he's killed more than
30 species in Africa, he has decided
to hang up his riﬂe, except for the
occasional deer in his backyard.
Weston has dedicated his time to
curating a "silent zoo" in his basement. The zoo includes mounts
for most of the animals he killed
in Africa, including a full-body
mount of the 14-foot croc. There
also is a rug made from his lioness, a mounted zebra, cape buffalo
and a rhino that greets you as you
descend the stairs into his museum.
You also can see some of the
rarest semi-precious stones, petriﬁed coral and the numerous Safari
Club trophies Weston has brought
home, including the coveted trophy for bagging the African Dangerous Seven, the only trophy of
its kind awarded to a hunter in the
state of Missouri.
Now, Weston hosts tours for
local schools and community
groups and is always happy to
show anyone around his zoo.
His stories are sure to excite
you, from the time he had to kill a
black bear at point-blank range to
the story of his lioness, who had
mauled the landowner the week
before he shot her. He may even
show you a DVD of his hunts to
help you relive his excitement.
For more information about
Weston's adventures, or to schedule
a tour of the mounted animals in his
silent zoo, call 816-632-7042.
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Missouri - November 2013
Rural Missouri - November 2013
White mules and family wine
Helping our neighbors
A rolling tribute to freedom
Out of the Way Eats
Big man from a small town
Hearth and Home
Best of rural Missouri
Rural Missouri - November 2013