February 22, 2004 |
Nearly 700 people turned out to bid farewell to Keiko, the killer whale who starred in the popular "Free Willy" movies and died of pneumonia last December in Norway. The crowd gathered at the Oregon Coast Aquarium in Newport, where Keiko lived from 1996 to 1998. Officials at the aquarium organized the event in response to hundreds of e-mails, letters and phone calls from Keiko's fans who sought closure.
March 4, 2000 |
Keiko, the killer whale star of the "Free Willy" movies, swam out of his pen into the enclosed waters of a remote Icelandic bay Friday to the delight of a nature group preparing him for a return to the wild. The 5-ton whale poked his nose through an underwater cage and moved into another pool where he will have medical tests.
December 16, 2003 |
Keiko, the killer whale star of the "Free Willy" movies, was buried Monday during the deep darkness of Nordic winter in a ceremony kept secret from the public. "We wanted to let him be at peace," said Dane Richards, one of his caretakers. "He's free now and in the wild." The roughly 6-ton whale died Friday in a Norwegian bay where his team was trying to reintroduce him to the wild. His trainers said the likely cause of death was pneumonia.
September 10, 1998 |
It took the efforts of a Seattle billionaire, the United States Air Force and thousands of children around the world, but a 9,050-pound killer whale-turned-Hollywood star was hoisted onto a C-17 cargo jet Wednesday and flown one step closer to freedom in his native waters in Iceland.
May 20, 1998 |
Elias Jonsson has never seen "Free Willy," the children's movie--"I must have been working then or something," he says politely--but he still has some well-informed views on plans now afoot to bring its 10,000-pound star home to native waters. Jonsson, a diver by trade, was hired back in the late 1970s--around the time "Willy" was caught and shipped south--to care for killer whales that Icelandic herring fishermen sometimes net by accident.
August 7, 2002 |
Keiko the killer whale, star of the film "Free Willy," is adjusting to life in the wild after years in captivity and is with a school of killer whales off Iceland's southern coast, scientists said Tuesday. "We are very excited and optimistic about Keiko's chances of surviving in the wild," said Hallur Hallsson, spokesman for Ocean Futures, which is monitoring Keiko's adaptation to the open seas.