The first time I met Ol’ Scout, he was with JoyBelle (aka Barbara Lent) down at one of my Frontier Days Blackpowder matches in Pala. He was  a tall, distinguished and very soft spoken individual when I was first introduced to him. This was about 10 years ago. The relationship grew as we shared thoughts on Blackpowder related subjects, guns, powder, history, and reloading. We had numerous discussions on future joint projects with Blackpowder Cowboy matches. Soon a decision was reached and one of the Frontier Days matches was held at Cajon Cowboys in 2003. It drew a respectable crowd and everyone had a great time. This relationship developed further and later became part of the Brimstone Pistoleros organization. On a social note, my wife and I had numerous lunches and outings with Richard and Barbara. One of our favorite lunch places was the Guadalajara Grill in Temecula. These were great face to face opportunities between us to discuss all subject matters and future projects over Carnitas Tacos and a few Brews.                                 

Richard F. Clark was born in 1933, an only child with most of his upbringing in the Ontario/Upland area. He was married with 2 step children, a boy and girl. He started learning gunsmithing as a youngster from his father and became quite proficient. A very sharp and dedicated individual making all of his own tooling and obtaining recognition that later resulted in a consulting job with law enforcement groups in the San Bernardino area. He talked about his college days and his career began in Geology and the Mining Industry. Apparently, this did not last from what he had shared and he further continued into the field of electronics. His spent many years in the engineering sector of General Dynamics in analog RF (radio frequency) electronics from which he eventually retired.

Richard had many interests other than firearms. One was motorcycles. He talked about some of his Indian Motorcycles. He mentioned once about riding out in the Devore canyon area and meeting up with actor Steve McQueen who was a serious Indian Motorcycle collector. Also, he and some of his friends purchased and restored an antique steam engine that was later sold to the Disney Studio in Burbank.

His involvement in firearms was deep, but his real love were the guns of the Spanish American War. His vast knowledge of early Remington autoloaders, European bolt actions, etc. was amazing. A single question would lead into his vast database of detailed information. Part of his interest here lead to the Wild Bunch category of weapons. He had prepared quite a thesis on the subject matter covering what he considered as the most “correct” assemblage of firearms to be used.

As for Blackpowder guns, he had a unique taste for percussion pistols, Rogers and Spencer, Starr, and Colt 1862 Police. He always shot his Rogers and Spencer’s at the matches. Those apparently were his favorites.

He was a fanatic about developing different loads for Blackpowder cartridges and religiously spending time on a weekly basis out at Devore testing them. He tested about all of the different manufacturers products also. His preference was Schuetzen. He also provided BP cartridges for others at matches so that they could enjoy an opportunity on the “dark side”.

As SASS #323, Ol’ Scout was part of the early days. He was on the BOD with the Cajon Cowboys with the development of the property and also with the Double R Bar Regulators in Lucerne Valley. He loved the Desert and owned a few pieces of property out in Lucerne Valley. He even talked about eventually moving out there. The Brimstone Pistoleros organization was his base for promoting Blackpowder CAS matches. He was a great person to run thoughts by for ideas on what could we do next. He just wasn’t satisfied with the “standard” SASS shooting categories. He was a real promoter of long gun style matches.

Health wise, he suffered from COPD that resulted from his early years of smoking. He would comment frequently that out of all of the things he missed, he missed his lungs the most. He was limited in getting around on the range and later set up an electric “mule” cart that he cruised around in. He built ramps and mounted a winch in the bed of his pickup for it. Unfortunately he did not get a chance to use it very much.

After suffering from a long series of complications from COPD, Ol’ Scout passed away on August 7, 2009. He is survived by his son and daughter and his cat, Yo-Yo who is currently under the excellent care by his Aunt Lois. He will definitely be missed by us all.

Red Sun aka Fred Boatright
SASS #635

Old Scout
Richard Clark