The bullet that pierced the shoulder of Ugandan ranger Samuel Loware had already taken one life and could easily have added his. The shell was fired by a Sudanese poacher trying to flee back over the border with contraband meat from the Kidepo Valley national park.
Loware had been tracking the fugitive - one of a band of heavily armed raiders - from the early morning with the help of a local villager. As the two pursuers approached a gully, the poacher opened fire from behind a tree trunk that had been pushed down by an elephant. One shot passed through the chest of the villager into the body of the ranger, who was returning fire.
The poacher escaped, leaving the villager dead and Loware with a bullet lodged under his skin. The bone was not fractured but the wound could have been fatal. By the time the ranger reached the nearest clinic, the bullet had moved so far from the entry point that nurses were unable to find it. The sergeant had to be driven several hours further to a hospital in Kitgum , where X-rays revealed the location – four inches down his back – allowing a surgeon to cut it out before it could claim a second life.