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In Gratitude – Ted N. Bailey (1940 – 2021)

Ted N. Bailey’s remarkable achievements extend beyond his lifetime.  

May 24, 2022

A wildlife expert who worked extensively in the USA, as well as in Europe and Africa, Ted left a bequest to The Thin Green Line to support the families of Fallen Rangers. 

Having only been introduced, as it were, to Ted after he passed away, we’ve learnt a little about this fascinating man from Ted’s daughter, Rebecca Bailey.

“When my dad worked as a wildlife biologist for several years in South Africa’s Kruger National Park in the early 1970s, he gained a huge respect for the rangers who often helped him with the research and ecological work with leopards he was working on in the park,” Rebecca said. 

“He knew rangers risked their lives every day to save wildlife and, before he died, he made it very clear to me and my siblings that this foundation was very important to him,” said Rebecca.  

Ted developed a love of the outdoors at an early age. He became enthralled by nature.  

Ted majored in zoology at Ohio State University. As a research associate at the University of Idaho where he completed his PhD, he conducted research on wolverines in Montana.  

He wrote one of the first concise books on leopards for the scientific world.  

“Our father’s gift (to Thin Green Line) makes us feel as if his life was extended – helping these families of fallen rangers,” Rebecca said. “Hearing about how each ranger lost their life and how that has affected their families’ lives is very moving.”  

“It was not in vain, for the rangers’ lives made a huge difference in the world and their families deserve assistance,” said Rebecca. “Dad would have been so gratified to know his bequest was reaching families in different countries.” 

Impact of Ted’s Bequest

Ted N. Bailey’s bequest to The Thin Green Line has supported eight families of Fallen Rangers. His gift has reached Cameroon, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Zambia and Peru; an enduring legacy giving each family member something priceless – hope for the future. 

Ms Malindi Phiri* in south-west Zambia has five children, four of them still in school. Her ranger husband was killed on duty in early 2021. With funds from Ted’s bequest, she was able to pay the fees to keep her children at school and set up a local shop to sell rice in the community, providing her family with an ongoing income.  

Her gratitude for the unexpected support, from someone she did not know, is heartfelt. 

Ted was a longstanding member of The Wildlife Society and a former member of the Cat Specialists Group, International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Over many years at the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska he managed studies on wolves, moose, snowshoe hares, lynx, marten, trumpeter swans, bald eagles, and caribou. His book ‘The African Leopard’was published in 1993. He also wrote or co-authored publications on striped skunks, bobcats, lynx and other North American wildlife.   

He always appreciated opportunities to experience nature – hiking, canoeing and observing wildlife. In Ted’s own words, he was able to experience our planet’s wonderful natural world in ways many only dream about. 

Bequests nearly always come to us from unexpected sources; people from all walks of life and diverse backgrounds. With Ted N. Bailey’s gift, we’re honoured to receive a bequest from such a leading authority on nature – a knowledgeable and experienced wildlife expert. 

We understand a little of how Ms Malindi Phiri* felt when she said how moved she was to receive practical help from someone she didn’t know. Thank you Ted N. Bailey, PhD. 

In memory of Ted Bailey and all the fearless Rangers whose lives have been lost on the line of duty.

* for the purpose of this article we have changed the recipient’s name to respect her privacy.

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