20 Years Ago: Elephant Attack at Central Wyoming Fairgrounds
This month marks the 20th anniversary of an infamous event at the Central Wyoming Fairgrounds in Casper.
On June 14, 1996, an Asian circus elephant named Sue was giving rides to children when she reportedly became agitated by a nearby horse. The four-ton animal then charged her trainer, knocking her down and repeatedly kicking her.
A child who was riding the elephant escaped without injury after falling eight feet to the ground below. Meanwhile, the trainer was hospitalized with minor injuries.
At the time of the incident, the trainer was helping the child mount the elephant. The elephant jumped, knocking the child and the trainer to the ground. When the trainer stood up, the elephant charged and knocked her down again before kicking her several times. Luckily, the trainer curled into a ball, which may have saved her life.
Sadly, this wasn't the first time the elephant had attacked a trainer. In 1994, a similar event occurred at a circus in Salt Lake City, Utah. In December of 2005,
Sue and several other elephants were transferred from the circus to an elephant sanctuary, Unfortunately, Sue fell ill and died on December 30th.