I learned of a very tragic story today. I often see sad tales of animal abuse that move me to tears, but this one struck me more deeply than most.
Mary, a 12 year emu who had found refuge from the evils of mankind at Rikki’s Refuge in Orange County, Virginia, was brutally murdered as she awaited her breakfast from a caring caretaker.
According to news reports, a staff member had temporarily stepped away from her pen, and in the short time of the caretaker’s absence, a trespasser shot Mary and killed her. The layout of the animal sanctuary is such that the shooting most definitely was an intentional act and not an accidental stray bullet.
I have difficulty understanding any sort of abuse to animals or people. But this sort of act defies any sort of logic or understanding. The act of killing just because you can is beyond any reasonable person’s understanding.
There was no way that this animal could have caused anyone to feel rage or anger. This was not an emotional outburst. It was a callous and shallow act that likely humored an ignorant individual lacking empathy and emotional accord with other living beings.
We live in a society that has an increasing number of people like this, and it is terrifying.
We know what causes it. There is a whole litany of cultural influences that feed this sort of shallow callous monster that we have created. Yet our own wants and desires prevent us from looking honestly at what could change things. This really saddens me.
My heart cries for Mary and for those who loved and cared for her. My heart cries for so many innocent animals and people who are struck down needlessly.
My hope is that, someday, my heart will have less reason to cry.
From Rikki’s Refuge:
We are offering a $1,000 reward to the person(s) who supply us with information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person who did this. Phone 540-854-0870 x1 or email mail@RikkisRefuge.org or PO 1357, Orange VA 22960. We will keep the name of any informers confidential and also welcome anonymous tips. If you prefer to deal directly with the sheriff you may call 540-672-1200 or 540-672-9725 for animal control.
Please share this message far and wide. Any help we can get to the folks at Rikki’s Refuge is welcome. They are a great organization and do wonders with rescuing animals of all kinds.
Thank you, Rikki’s Refuge, for all that you do on behalf of animals. RIP sweet Mary.