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Zoo horror as 8,000lb elephant backs female trainer into a wall and crushes her to death
Daily Mail ^ | 1/16/11

Posted on 01/16/2011 4:07:18 AM PST by markomalley

An inquiry is underway after an 8,000lb elephant at a Tennessee zoo backed a trainer into a wall and crushed her to death yesterday.

Knoxville Zoo said today that it had temporarily closed its elephant exhibit, while the rest of the zoo remained open.

But a zoo spokesman insisted the death of 33-year-old Stephanie James was nothing more than a terrible and tragic accident.

Tina Rolen, assistant director of marketing at the zoo, said: 'It's a difficult day but our staff is very professional and they are carrying on with their duties today.'

She said the review of yesterday's tragedy was continuing.

Ms James was fatally injured while performing routine chores involving Edie, a 26-year-old, 8,000lb elephant which is eight-and-a-half feet tall at the shoulder.

Edie is one of three African elephants at the zoo.

Ms Rolen said: 'At this point in time we don't believe it to be a malicious act or an aggressive act on Edie's part, but the review is ongoing to determine what happened in the barn.

(Excerpt) Read more at dailymail.co.uk ...


TOPICS: Weird Stuff
KEYWORDS: animals; elephant; knoxville; tennessee; zoo

1 posted on 01/16/2011 4:07:20 AM PST by markomalley
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To: markomalley

I feel badly for the woman and her loved ones. She must have known the dangers of her job.

Zoo’s are interesting to visit every so often, but I always walk away feeling sorry for the animals in captivity. Not surprized that this happens on ocassion.

We have a pretty nice zoo here in San Antonio, if you’re into going to the Zoo.


2 posted on 01/16/2011 4:15:29 AM PST by nagdt ("None of my EX's live in Texas")
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To: markomalley

Can’t blame the elephant, they weren’t made to be kept in zoos


3 posted on 01/16/2011 4:21:48 AM PST by mewykwistmas ("Politicians are the same all over. They promise to build a bridge even where there is no river. ")
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Comment #4 Removed by Moderator

To: markomalley; null and void
Ms James was fatally injured while performing routine chores involving Edie, a 26-year-old, 8,000lb elephant

3,2,1 until that certain pic shoes up.

RIP

5 posted on 01/16/2011 4:32:19 AM PST by Ezekiel (The Obama-nation began with the Inauguration of Desolation.)
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To: markomalley

Since it was an elephant, Liberals will turn this into another right-wing murder conspiracy.


6 posted on 01/16/2011 4:46:34 AM PST by maddog55 (OBAMA, You can't fix stupid...)
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To: nagdt

They ain’t great big grey puppy dogs. African elephants are always looking to kill you.


7 posted on 01/16/2011 5:04:40 AM PST by Haiku Guy (What we've got here is ... failure to communicate.)
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To: markomalley

Whenever I read these stories of animals going nuts and killing their trainers...I...I...can’t help but think that they really, really hate living in captivity.


8 posted on 01/16/2011 5:09:53 AM PST by Suvroc10
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To: markomalley

Always carry a concealed mouse on you when working with elephants to scare them if they get uppity.


9 posted on 01/16/2011 5:37:42 AM PST by MadMitch
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To: Suvroc10

I think they hate living in captivity even if the conditions are in human opinion good. In our state, many years ago, an elephant was hanged for trampling a trainer to death. The best I remember, it was in a parade, and when it saw watermelons in a stall, it just went wild. Elephants love watermelons; and one has to wonder if it had even seen a watermelon since it was taken from its original home country.


10 posted on 01/16/2011 5:43:31 AM PST by Twinkie (LEFTIST FREE SPEECH GOOD. - CONSERVATIVE FREE SPEECH BAD.)
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To: markomalley

Maybe the elephant was tired of being paid in peanuts?


11 posted on 01/16/2011 5:45:02 AM PST by Wizdum (Wisdom is what you gain when things go wrong.)
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To: markomalley

Some how, the Tea Party is involved.


12 posted on 01/16/2011 5:59:14 AM PST by Lockbar (March toward the sound of the guns.)
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To: markomalley

Animals are not people. They are not “aware” as are people. Animals are not responsible when they injure people. They are doing as animals do.


13 posted on 01/16/2011 6:07:58 AM PST by Leftism is Mentally Deranged (Liberalism is against human nature. Practicing liberalism is detrimental to your mental stability.)
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To: markomalley
I worked at the Knoxville zoo back in 1980-1981 before and during veterinary college. My chores were cleaning out the elephant exhibit from time to time. One African had a pretty volatile disposition at times so I stayed clear of her but one time I was intent on cleaning up and didn't pay attention to where she was and she thumped me with her trunk. It was like being hit with a large baseball bat. She sent me reeling up against the wall and I left the enclosure rapidly and waited for her to go back out. I can see where in one moment of unawareness an elephant could do some real damage...on purpose or just by accident. I feel for the family of this woman.
14 posted on 01/16/2011 6:18:29 AM PST by vetvetdoug
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To: Twinkie
In our state, many years ago, an elephant was hanged for trampling a trainer to death.

"Hanged?" As in "sent to the gallows?" As in "given a neck-tie party?"

Regards,

15 posted on 01/16/2011 6:24:31 AM PST by alexander_busek
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To: markomalley

... zoo spokesman insisted the death of 33-year-old Stephanie James was nothing more than a terrible and tragic accident - the elephant accidentally backed the female trainer into a wall and accidentally crushed her to death.


16 posted on 01/16/2011 6:49:45 AM PST by flowerplough (Thomas Sowell: Those who look only at Obama's deeds tend to become Obama's critics.)
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To: Ezekiel
3,2,1 until that certain pic shoes up.

Here ya go...


17 posted on 01/16/2011 6:51:38 AM PST by null and void (We are now in day 726 of our national holiday from reality. - 0bama really isn't one of US.)
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To: markomalley

How slow do you have to be to let an elephant back you into a wall and crush you?.


18 posted on 01/16/2011 7:18:14 AM PST by Vaduz
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To: markomalley
I haven't been to the Knoxville Zoo since 1976 or 1977, when I visited to pick up two Bengal Tiger cubs that were being surplussed. The zoo had lost funding because the director had supported an unsuccessful candidate for mayor.

As with many zoos, you can tell where a long-term director started at the zoo by what is emphasized. At the time, Knoxville had so many large cats that most were kept in areas not on display to the public, and only a couple were let out into the public enclosure each day.

I remember walking down a foul-smelling underground hallway with a center drain running the length of it, lit by a couple of lightbulbs hanging by wires from the ceiling, corn crib cages on either side of me, and big cats playfully pawing out from each side, paws probably within 24" of each shoulder as I walked on the metal drain cover like a tightrope.

The mama Bengal and her cubs were in the last cage on the right.

I remember watching Silence of the Lambs years later and having the memory of my walk spring sharply to mind as I watched Clarice Starling's walk down that corridor to seek Hannibal Lecter.

19 posted on 01/16/2011 7:34:13 AM PST by Scoutmaster (You knew the job was dangerous when you took it, Fred.)
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To: markomalley

Edie had an itch that needed scratching...


20 posted on 01/16/2011 7:44:52 AM PST by who knows what evil? (G-d saved more animals than people on the ark...www.siameserescue.org.)
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To: alexander_busek

Edison also electrocuted one on Coney Island in 1903 and filmed it. Google "Topsy the Elephant"

21 posted on 01/16/2011 7:58:08 AM PST by Tijeras_Slim (Jubtabulously We Thrive!)
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To: MadMitch

hahahaha


22 posted on 01/16/2011 9:30:23 AM PST by Yorlik803 (better to die on your feet than live on your knees.)
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To: vetvetdoug

Not many people have been thumped me with an elephant trunk! Is that in your resume? It should be.


23 posted on 01/16/2011 10:35:57 AM PST by B4Ranch (Do NOT remain seated until this ride comes to a full and complete stop! We're going the wrong way!)
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To: markomalley

YEARS ago I worked in Missouri and talked with a farmer who told me he had a mule that would wait until you got in the stall with him and then crowd you flat up against the wall. Some of these critters know EXACTLY what they are doing.


24 posted on 01/16/2011 11:08:20 AM PST by Oatka ("A society of sheep must in time beget a government of wolves." –Bertrand de Jouvenel)
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To: markomalley

They need to interrogate the hell out of that elephant to find out why it did what it did.


25 posted on 01/16/2011 11:53:53 AM PST by Newtoidaho (Liberals are drooling buffoons backed by satanic goons.)
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To: null and void

That elephant can lose 50 pounds just by doing that...too bad people cannot lose that much weight just by doing that..


26 posted on 01/16/2011 2:27:12 PM PST by goat granny
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To: alexander_busek

Yes. To the best of my recollection, it was for trampling a trainer to death, and the elephant was hoisted up on a gallows and hanged - with some sort of lifting device used in those days in sensible work. I have thought it was a pitiful, ignorant and misguided action that I’m ashamed happened in my state (Tennessee). It was in a parade and went wild when it saw, and probably smelled, watermelons piled in a stall. It was obviously not done maliciously; the elephant had probably been worked hard in the hours before the parade - helping ereck circus tents. It was probably dehydrated and thirsty. It was pitiful. I’m not a PETA person, but that hurt me. It has been many years since that happened, before I was born. - We have an elephant sanctuary in Tennessee now where elephants that have been mistreated and worked nearly to death are taken to live free on a big tract of land in Hohenwald, Tennessee for the rest of their lives.


27 posted on 01/16/2011 5:25:20 PM PST by Twinkie (LEFTIST FREE SPEECH GOOD. - CONSERVATIVE FREE SPEECH BAD.)
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To: Oatka

OSHA will demand that elephants be equipped with back-up beepers.
BEEP
BEEP
BEEP
What’s that sound? The Patriot’s backing out of the playoffs.


28 posted on 01/16/2011 5:29:34 PM PST by minespacer
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To: markomalley

This is a reminder that elephants and other such creatures may be tamed, but they’re still wild animals of incredible strength. They’re entertainment, but they shouldn’t be trifled with. It’s terrible that this happened.


29 posted on 01/16/2011 5:35:59 PM PST by NailInACoffin
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