Just like many elephants raised in captivity, Shirley’s life has been influenced by one tragedy after another. She was brought in as a youngster and immediately drafted by a circus. She spent the next 30 years traveling and performing but a tragic incident left her handicapped and unable to perform.
When she was 30 years old, this small Louisiana zoo accepted her in, but her life didn’t get much better. For more than 22 years all she had was a small patch of grass, a concrete stall and this man, Solomon, who’s been taking care of her for decades. Now, Shirley is not as young as she used to be and years of living in dismal conditions made an impact on her body, but finally her luck has turned.
After 2 decades of not seeing another elephant, Shirley is being sent to an Elephant sanctuary, where she’ll have hundreds of acres to wonder around, a warm barn to sleep in and most importantly she’ll have friends. Leaving the past behind shouldn’t be that hard, but her goodbye to Solomon is what made me reach for the tissues.