IN MEMORY OF
I first heard of Wayne and his tireless efforts to safe keep Tanzania’s wildlife, from Jane Goodall in early 2015. You don’t get a bigger endorsement than that in the world of conservation! I quickly got in touch with PAMS Foundation and I immediately knew that this was the organisation I wanted to get involved with; there were no egos here, just an absolute pure determination and passion for conservation. Wayne and Krissie made a formidable team and their achievements and successes were measured in lives, carcass numbers came down wherever they got involved, the figures and stats where there to prove their effectiveness. I appreciated their local community based approach which had a lasting legacy to it, rather than a quick fix approach. After all, it is the villagers and local game scouts who are the best protectors of the continent’s animals, they just didn’t know it yet.
Wayne’s ground-breaking work in developing an intelligence-based approach to anti-poaching helped successfully reverse the rampant rates of poaching in Tanzania and his method was implemented effectively in many other parts of the Continent.
Sadly, there were many obstacles along the way. From bureaucracy, international criminal syndicates and many other characters that can’t be named, Wayne and Krissie’s lives were in constant danger. I was privileged to share some of Wayne’s frustrations as a friend and I admired his incredible courage, bravery and sheer determination. The threats were just part of the job for them…
Beyond the seriousness of his mission, was this gentle giant of a man with a huge heart. You could not help falling for Wayne’s charm and razor sharp wit, he had an endless arsenal of gags and silly one liners always ready to surprise you with. I loved that he would order a steak and a milkshake, he cracked me up!
Wayne devoted his life to Africa’s wildlife, but tragically he paid the ultimate price for it. He died bravely fighting for the cause he was most passionate about, I suppose there was no better way for him to go . . .
We were due to have dinner together that night, alas it is a night I shall never forget.
My life is richer for knowing Wayne Lotter, he was my hero and I shall never forget him, nor stop supporting his legacy through the Foundation which he created.
RIP my friend . . .