The elephant shot in a drive-by last year in Mississippi returned to the stage with Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey on Thursday, almost exactly a year after the terrifying incident, according to WMC-TV.
Carol the elephant, who is now 40 years old, was shot by an assailant with a single bullet that entered her right side. Doctors said a few inches in either direction would have ended her life.
She was shot outside of BancorpSouth Arena in Tupelo in 2013. The case has never been solved, despite the $34,000 reward offered for information leading to the capture of the suspect.
All that police know is that the suspect may have driven a light-colored SUV, but don’t have much else to go on. Seriously, who shoots an elephant?!
“It was quite frankly an embarrassing moment for the city, but hopefully those days are behind us.” said Tupelo Mayor Jason Shelton.
She was given a special cape on Wednesday night for her courage along with a few others who received special gifts. However, despite her heroic return, there are some who believe Carol should be retired.
In fact almost 17,000 people have signed a petition on Change.org that, in part, states, “… if Ringling Bros circus cares about animals at all, they need to keep Carol off their tours and retire her. There are reports that she’s going to be out for several weeks, but why can’t the circus just let her enjoy life in a more natural way?
No one can tell me that those circus tricks and shipping elephants cross-country in train cars and trucks to perform under bright lights is what’s best for Carol, can they?”
Time will tell if Carol will continue with Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey or if she will live out a quiet retirement, free from the cares of working life.
Image via YouTube