Last September, a tortoise aged approximately 70 years old was found wandering in a residential area in Illinois with a screwdriver sticking out of her back. According to officials, someone had tried to murder the poor reptile but luckily failed.
A closer look at the murder weapon revealed that the turtle, named Tuttle, had been stabbed in the head during the attack. Despite the injuries she received, including blindness in one eye, a fractured skull, and internal injuries, Tuttle refused to give up on life.
Fortunately, her rescuers, Paul and Diane Tuttle, weren’t ready to let her die, either. Commenting on her sweet demeanor, Paul told the Journal Star last September that she “never snapped at us. [Tuttle] was very calm.”
He – among many – also couldn’t comprehend what could inspire someone to harm a creature in such a way. Paul stated:
“I don’t know why you’d do this. Was it kids being mean and they’ll grow up to become serial killers? Was it someone being drunk and stupid? I don’t know.”
The Tuttle family quickly transported her to the All Pets Clinic in Peoria for treatment where the turtle received all the aid she’d need for her long road to recovery. She found a new caretaker in Douglas Holmes, a herpetologist from the Peoria Zoo, who volunteered to take her into his home until she healed enough to be released.
The compassion and aid allowed Tuttle to overcome her injuries. Nine months after she was discovered, the resilient turtle was released in a remote (and undisclosed) marshland so she can live the remainder of her life in the wild.
The Journal Star caught up to Holmes, who commented that all the time and effort poured into the turtle’s recovery was worth it.
“Animals deserve that chance. It always feels good when you see an animal go free,” he said.
Authorities may never know who tried to kill the tortoise last year. Fortunately, Tuttle survived and can now live freely in the wild, thanks to the aid of compassionate animal rights activists.
The day we found the turtle wandering around our house.
Posted by The Tuttle Turtle on Thursday, October 8, 2015
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