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RICHARD ZIMMERMAN


IDAHO – The end of an era has come due to the passing of a legend!

Richard Zimmerman lived a life that many, if not all, would never ever dream of. Zimmerman’s life was as simplistic as it got, having never owned a telephone or a television and lived off of the land. In today’s tech-crazy society, that’s almost unheard of.

Known as “Dugout Dick” or the “Salmon River Caveman,” Zimmerman lived a life on his own terms and worked for only himself. He passed away Wednesday and left a legacy and a cult following behind him.

He was the last of Idaho’s river-canyon loners that date back to Territorial days. They are a unique group that until the 1980s included canyon contemporaries with names like Beaver Dick, Cougar Dave and Wheelbarrow Annie, “Buckskin Bill” (real name Sylvan Hart) and “Free Press Frances” Wisner. Zimmerman appeared once in National Geographic and balked numerous times on appearing on the “Tonight Show.”

“I have everything here,” he once said. “I got lots of rocks and rubber tires. I have plenty of straw and fruit and vegetables, my dog and my cats and my guitars. I make wine to cook with. There’s nothing I really need.”

Dugout Dick lived to be 93. His brother, Raymond Zimmerman, has requested that his remains be returned to Illinois.