Surely on more than one occasion, you have dreamed of having an animal shelter, where you can take care of them, protect them, and above all know that they are not at risk from any other animal or from humans; it’s a beautiful thing, don’t you think?
Well, that was a dream that Lawrence Anthony made come true, but he took it to another level because instead of creating a shelter for dogs or cats, he created a shelter for elephants. Yes, as you read, he spent much of his life creating and caring for a shelter for these pachyderms.
Who Was Lawrence Anthony?
Before creating his refuge, Anthony was an employee of a real estate company, but during 1990 he decided to leave his job and dedicate himself to creating a reserve dedicated to the conservation of animals, for which he was the owner and founder of the Thula Private Game Reserve Thula and Safari Lodge.
He was the savior of a lot of elephants
During that same year, a pack of elephants fled the South African National Park, escaping the hunters, so Lawrence took them to the reserve and took charge of them from there. At first, they were very wild and indomitable animals, but Anthony never gave up and arranged to have a good relationship with the queen of the pack, the elephant Nana, who after a long time, began to see him as one more in the pack.
He took care of them until their death
After creating his shelter, dedicating his life to caring for these animals, being an environmental activist, and writing a book called The Elephant Whisperer, Lawrence’s life ended, but something strange happened with the elephants he had dedicated more than 10 years of his life.
Two packs attended his funeral
Two packs of elephants traveled for more than 12 hours to reach their caretaker’s home. Although they were wild elephants, thanks to the love and kindness they had received from Anthony, they were no longer violent, and strangely when Lawrence died, they arrived at the place and held a vigil for 2 days in the place and then left.
How did they know Lawrence was dead?
It really is a mystery how the elephants noticed the death of their friend, but a rabbi from the area where the Game Reserve is located mentioned something about it:
If there ever was a time, when we could truly feel the wonderful interconnectedness of all beings, it is when we reflect on the elephants of Thula Thula. One man’s heart stops, and the hearts of hundreds of elephants are afflicted.
This man’s so loving heart offered to heal these elephants, and now they came to pay loving tribute to their friend.
—Leila Gal Berner, rabbi