Monday, April 15, 2019

Help Solve Wichita Falls Sikes Lake Fynn Goose Murder

Yesterday I was shocked to learn of the murder of one of my favorite Sikes Lake geese.


A GoFundMe page has been set up to help raise funds to get Justice For Fynn.

I had an encounter with Fynn just last week, whilst he was in protect his adopted family mode.

Following is the story of Fynn, told on the aforementioned GoFundMe page. Read the story and see if you can understand why Vernon College is being so uncooperative regarding the investigation into the murder of Fynn.

Justice For Fynn

Fynn was a beautiful, majestic, kind, and loyal male Chinese (domesticated) goose who had been abandoned an at outlying pond at the edge of town, it is suspected when his petting zoo went out of business in 2016. Starving and lonely in that not well visited place, I rescued him and took him in for a month of rehabilitation to get his weight back up. When he was in good health, I moved him to Sikes Lake in Wichita Falls, Tx, where others of his kind also resided. After only a short time there, he shrugged off trying to fit in with the other Chinese geese, and he saw a family of wild Canada geese with 11 of their only  days' old goslings, who had just hatched out on the campus of Vernon College, adjacent to Sikes Lake.  Fynn decided that this mom and dad had their hands full protecting 11 babies, so my rescue goose then decided that he, himself,  would also be a goose rehabber, and that these babies needed 3 protectors instead of just 2. And, surprisingly, mommy and daddy Canada goose let him into their family and trusted Fynn, when they would not even trust others of their own kind. Because Fynn was my rescue goose and who always came to me when called and showed affection, the Canada geese also came to trust me and let me mingle in their family, because they trusted that Fynn trusted me. The babies came to know both Fynn and I quite well, and I fed them back up food regularly every 2-3 days. And for the next year they all traveled together as a family, with Fynn often leading them all. They relied on him because he was the largest of them and it made them feel safe that he was among them as an ally.

As the babies turned to juveniles, Summer and Fall turned to Winter, yet, they all stayed together as a family. When Spring came again this year, mommy goose began preparing for nesting once more on the campus of nearby Vernon College, just outside the east entrance. She had done this many years before. What was different this time, is that they now had a new adult family member to help stand guard over the nesting mother. It would have been Fynn's second group of goslings to help raise for this family, but it was his first time here to guard the nest. He often rotated out duties with the daddy goose and gave him a break. Daddy goose usually preferred to stay in a nearby field and keep away other Canada geese. But Fynn preferred to be right here most of the time, guarding the immediate vicinity of the nest. He quickly became known to students and faculty and was adored by many. During my daily visits to leave food and water for the mother and whomever was standing guard, I would often speak at length to people coming and going, and told their story, and Fynn's own story, and would demonstrate to them my close relationship with Fynn, his trust of me, and how harmless and loving he really was. 

Canada goose incubation takes about 24-28 days to hatching. Fynn was very excited to meet the next group of babies, and help raise them. And he was almost there. But sadly, at approximately day 20, Fynn's life was cut short by a murdering, animal abusing, coward, who fired a BB into his chest as he stood his guard post on the morning of April 11, 2019. He was later found by a bystander entering the building and taken to a local bird rescue, where he died just 5 minutes before I could arrive to render him aid or let him know that his daddy was there for him as he passed. That was stolen from me. He was my best friend and a service animal to me, who once saved my life when I was in despair 3 years ago. That's how I first came to find him dumped and lonely in that remote and less well known pond. He was there, wanting to be my friend and feeling my pain, when I needed him most, and because he just so happened to have needed me too. He was stolen from many fans of my rescue, and the local people who also loved him and looked forward to his greeting in the morning. And most of all, he was stolen from his family and the next group of goslings who will now never benefit of his further protection, and will never know him,...nor that their biggest protector died just days before they came into the world.  They now won't know that he ever existed, and was silenced about a week shy of their laying eyes on him as their uncle whom they could also run to for protection.

I am also petitioning Vernon College for release of their security camera footage from at least 2 cameras pointed at the east entrance, landing, and parking lot. When I began investigating Fynn's death and inquiring about camera footage from security and actually making progress in finding students who witnessed something that morning, I was summarily barred from the premises by security for no justifiable reason, under threat of arrest. I had been coming here for 20 straight days to care for these geese and educate passers-by until they hatched, and did the same last year without any complaints whatsoever. But as soon as I start asking questions of students who are ON BREAK from class in a publicly accessible area, I am almost immediately approached and threatened with arrest by security if I return to ANY Vernon College property. This is an outrage. For a few years, I taught a kid's summer camp course for them on wildlife and environmental education. I led field trips to Sikes Lake to show the kids my release of local wildlife that had been rehabbed,  organized a lake shore clean up day with the kids, and was once considered adjunct faculty in the CE program as well. Never a single problem until the day after Fynn's death, when I had been there not more than 20 minutes and the head of security, Ken Terry, saw me and told me to leave under threat of arrest. 

Please help us raise a substantial reward, that will go to anyone providing information that will lead to reliable identification of his killer. Verifiable proof in the form of video, audio, text, witness statements, or confessions that satisfy me to a preponderance of the evidence of the killer's identity will be sufficient.

If you have any information at all about Fynn's murder, please help. And please donate today toward obtaining Justice for Fynn. 

Also need volunteers!

a. Someone who will draft/print hard copy petition for circulation on campus to get physical signatures requesting the release of security camera footage and Vernon College to reverse their baseless ban against me and reinstate my access to care for these geese.

b. Someone who will set up an online petition for circulation online and then share it.

c. Someone who will step up and meet me once a day, or as many times as they can, to receive fresh food and a water bottle from me, to refill the bowls for momma goose until such time as Vernon College reverses their unreasonable and unsubstantiated banning of me from continuing my work as a local wildlife rehabilitator and known face to this particular family of geese.

Thank you

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