Animal obituaries

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, January-February 2007:
Roadie, 14, a double-amputee Walker coonhound recalled by
Greg Kocher of the Lexington Herald-Leader as “a symbol of
perseverance to people with disabilities,” was euthanized on
November 30, 2006 due to incurable painful conditions of age. “In
1992,” Kocher wrote, “at only nine months old, he spent spent two or
three days and nights lying between the rails of railroad track,”
near Nicholsville, Kentucky, “after a freight train mangled his
right rear leg and left front leg. A railroad employee stopped to
put him out of his misery. The gun jammed. So he went to a nearby
farmhouse and asked if the dog belonged to anyone there. He didn’t,
but the woman who lived there began making calls, including one to
the Nicholasville Police. The police called Mike Griffitt, DVM.
Griffitt checked the dog’s tags and contacted the owner. After he
realized Roadie would never hunt again, the owner said he would take
the dog home and dispose of him. When the pup was gingerly loaded
into the truck, he wagged his tail. Griffitt asked whether he could
have him.” Roadie’s rescue and recovery was subsequently featured
by radio broadcaster Paul Harvey, CNN television, Reader’s Digest,
and Dog World. He spent the rest of his life at Griffitt’s Bluegrass
Veterinary Clinic.

Desert Orchid, 27, ridden to victory in 34 steeplechase
races between 1983 and 1991, including four King George VI
championships, died quietly in his stable near London, England, on
November 13, 2006. Readers of The Racing Post voted his 1989 charge
up Cheltenham Hill to beat rival Yahoo the greatest racing
performance of all time.
Moose, a 5-month-old kitten adopted at six weeks of age by
Amber Kelly and family, of Elbridge, New York, was allegedly tied
up, doused with gasoline, and burned alive on December 20, 2006 by
Dustin M. Gauger, 20, and Kyle D. Custer, 16. Both men were
charged by state police with felony aggravated cruelty to animals and
petty larceny. Custer was further charged with unlawful possession
of marijuana–and both were later charged with raping two
14-year-olds.

Porky, 5, a 300-pound pet pig who lived with farm manager
Aaron O’Brien and his girlfriend Camilla Skold on a 130-acre farm in
Mililani, Hawaii, was chased into their carport by five hunting
dogs and allegedly stabbed to death on October 22, 2006 by Joseph B.
Calarruda V, 28, as two farm tenants screamed for him to stop.
Calarudda was on probation after serving a year in prison for
kidnapping his former girlfriend in the parking lot of the Wai’anae
police station, and is facing a jury trial for illegal possession of
firearms, reported Peter Boylan of the Honolulu Advertiser.
Qin Qin, 17, the world’s only panda bear who was
brown-and-white instead of black-and-white, died unexpectedly on
November 22, 2006 at the Qinling Safari Park in Xi’an, capital of
Shaaxi province, China.

Osama Bin Laden, 45-50, a rogue tuskless Indian elephant,
was reportedly shot on December 15, 2006 by hunter Dipen Ram Phukan
and a team of forest rangers at the Behali tea plantation in Sonitpur
district, Assam–but a post mortem indicated that they killed an
innocent elephant. This was the second time an innocent elephant was
mistaken for “Osama” and killed, said Assam journalist Azam
Siddique. The real “Osama” elephant was declared a rogue in June
2003, after killing five people, had killed 13 through 2005 while
eluding pursuit, is believed to have killed four members of one
family on the night of November 19, and killed a woman in a forest
reserve several nights later. The Assam Assembly on December 14
passed a resolution ordering his death by the end of 2006.
Eleph-ants have killed 248 Assamese since 2001, while Assamese have
killed 268 elephants.

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