Zoo Staff Refuses To Save Drowning Chimp, Bystander Takes Matter Into His Own Hands
Jay Dawson August 1st 2017 Inspiration
It's not often in our lives that we have the chance to do something heroic for someone else. And even when that opportunity comes up, it's so easy to step back, let fear take over, and do nothing. But this man, this legend, Rick Swope, risked it all to be a hero. Best of all, he put his body on the line not for another human being, but for one of our furry chimpanzee friends. This is one heart-warming story you don't want to miss...
Play Time Turns Tragic
The scene: an average day at the Detroit Zoo, just last week. Thousands pass through the turnstiles each day at this iconic animal sanctuary in Michigan, and 99% of them leave with a happy smile and fond memories. This day, however, was different. At the chimpanzee exhibit, dozens watched on in horror as a playful game turned into something far more deadly.
Two of the chimps had started to play with each other, chasing one another around the enclosure to the delight of the spectators. Although the space they have to roam in is quite spacious, it is surrounded by a wide, deep, water-filled moat to separate the animals from the humans. And as the monkeys scampered and frolicked, they were getting dangerously close to the edge. Suddenly, the unthinkable happened: one of the chimps slipped and fell into the moat, struggling in the water and totally unable to climb back out. The crowd called for help, but none came...
The Zoo That Refused To Help
Nobody knows exactly why - maybe it was the danger involved in the rescue - but the zookeepers that rushed to the scene of the accident couldn't do anything to help the poor chimpanzee, fighting for its life in the dirty water of the moat. Either they couldn't do anything, or they simply wouldn't - either way, they were just going to let the chimp drown without lifting a finger.
It was a weird response from a zoo that has been open for over a century and has an exemplary record for animal safety and care. Over 1.2 million visitors every single year visit the incredible exhibits on offer at the Detroit Zoo, and they know that they're going to a place that really, deeply care for the welfare of their animals. Set on 125 acres of land, each enclosure is always being expanded to make the wildlife more comfortable and at home, and they refuse to keep animals which are stressed by the harsh Michigan winter. In 2005, in fact, they sent their two African elephants permanently south to California because the conditions in Detroit weren't good enough for them.
This Man Saves The Day
But on this day, whatever the reason, the zoo staff weren't going to help this chimp. Enter Rick Swope. As soon as he saw that nobody else was going to do anything for this desperate animal, he took action and dove straight into the moat to help him out. In this video you're about to see, he risked his own health in the filthy water and severe injury at the hands of other confused and angry monkeys just to save this poor guy.
And with the help and cheers of the onlookers, he saved this chimp's life. He is a hero, no doubt about it. Watch the video and you'll see exactly why, and exactly how, he shot to fame with his incredibly selfless act. He didn't do it for fame or glory - just so this animal would have another chance at life. Do you think you could rise to the challenge and do the same?