Illinois Zoo Gorilla 3-year-old Boy
December 29, 2011 by staff
Illinois Zoo Gorilla 3-year-old Boy, August 17, 1996: A 3-year-old boy fell into an exhibit occupied by gorillas at the Brookfield Zoo this afternoon, and was rescued by a female gorilla that cradled the child and brought him to zookeepers.
The boy injured his head when he fell 18 feet onto the exhibit’s concrete. He was alert when taken to a hospital, although his condition was later listed as critical.
Seven gorillas were on display in the exhibit. One of them, Binti, a 7-year-old female with a baby gorilla on her back, picked up the child, cradled him in her arms and placed him near a door where zookeepers could retrieve him, said Sondra Katzen, a spokeswoman for the zoo, 10 miles west of downtown Chicago.
Carrie Stewart, a visitor who witnessed the rescue, said, ”Another gorilla walked toward the boy, and she kind of turned around and walked away from the other gorillas and tried to be protective.”
In addition, zookeepers sprayed water on the exhibit to keep the other gorillas away from the boy, said a second spokeswoman, Melinda Pruett-Jones. ”They controlled the animals beautifully and had an emergency medical crew working on the little boy as soon as they possibly could,” Ms. Pruett-Jones said.
The child was taken to Loyola University Medical Center. His condition was listed there as critical, although Michael Maggio, a spokesman for the hospital, said he did not know the precise nature of the boy’s injuries. The hospital did not disclose the boy’s identity and said his parents were not available to comment.
Ms. Katzen, one of the spokeswomen at the zoo, said she believed that the boy had run ahead of his mother during their visit there but that she did not know how he had been able to get over a railing, three or four feet high, that separates the exhibit from visitors.
Ms. Katzen said this was the first time anyone had fallen into the gorilla pit since the zoo created it 14 years ago.
Please feel free to send if you have any questions regarding this post , you can contact on
Disclaimer: The views expressed on this site are that of the authors and not necessarily that of U.S.S.POST.