49-year-old elephant dies at Tennessee sanctuary

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HOHENWALD, Tenn. (WKRN) – The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee announced one of their elephants, 49-year-old Frieda, died Tuesday.

Frieda came to The Sanctuary after a lifetime of performing in 2006. She was underweight and suffered from arthritis, osteomyelitis, and exposure to tuberculosis.

Officials at The Sanctuary said her chronic conditions worsened over past few weeks, along with the pain associated.

Frieda was peacefully and humanly euthanized Tuesday afternoon, surrounded by those who cared for and loved her.

Her longtime companions, elephants Billie and Liz, were also nearby.

“She will be missed very much,” said The Elephant Sanctuary CEO Janice Zeitlin. “Frieda was known for leading ‘the threesome’ down new paths; they often spent time in a favorite area of the Q Habitat lovingly known as ‘Frieda’s Field.’ Staff and supporters are proud to have given Frieda the opportunity to explore The Elephant Sanctuary’s grassy meadows, wooded hillsides and ponds for nine years.”

Officials said after she passing, Billie and Liz were given the opportunity to say their goodbyes.

Liz entered the barn first and spent a few minutes touching Frieda’s body. When Billie entered, The Sanctuary says she and Liz rumbled and squeaked toward each other.

“Liz stood over Frieda’s body, using her belly and feet to touch her lost friend, while Billie gently glided her trunk over Frieda’s face, trunk and legs,” officials wrote.

A memorial page has been set up for Frieda. Click here to leave her a message.

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