By John Locker. Ivan. This book is a work of fiction, inspired by a true story. The idea of this book is to remind humans certain animals should not be kept in captivity alone. Ivan is a Mighty Silverback gorilla who was captured as an infant in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
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inspired by a true story.
humans certain animals should not be
kept in captivity alone.
who was captured as an infant in the
Democratic Republic of the Congo.
He was sent to the U.S. to be raised as a
pet in a home.
As Ivan grew larger he became “unmanageable” as a
pet and was then housed in a cage at the Big Top Mall.
circus mall and “Ivan the One and Only” was portrayed
as an angry beast. This mall promised circus shows with
elephants and other animals 365 days a year with three
shows at two, four, and seven o’clock.
Arcade. Ivan grew up in Mack’s house. He used to take
Ivan everywhere with him and dress him up. When Ivan
started breaking things in his house he brought him to live in
the mall, caged up for 27 long years!
reminded Ivan there was a better life out there for them. A
place where animals could be with other animals of their own
kind and not abused or locked up.
care. When she was sick, Mack bought another elephant, Ruby, who was just a baby.
Stella protected and loved Ruby. One day, Stella was dying and had Ivan promise her he
would find a way to get Ruby out of the mall and into a zoo.
remembering details. They both told Ivan stories of their beautiful life in the wild. Ivan’s
only memory was of his twin sister, Tag, who he played tag with all the time. Tag died next to
Ivan on the boat trip to the U.S. Ivan had a stuffed gorilla animal in his cage at the mall he named No-Tag
well. George’s daughter, Julia, always went to work with her dad.
She loved drawing, art, and Ivan. Crayons, markers and paper were
often given by Julia to Ivan through a small opening in his glass
drawings for $20-$25 a piece. Ivan began hiding his artwork inside
No-Tag to keep them secret from Mack. Ivan made these drawings
to show Julia.
paper that ended up in Ivan’s cage enabled him to draw the message of H-O-M-E on
sheets of paper like a puzzle. When Ivan showed Julia, she contacted the local news without telling Mack.
inspecting the animal’s living conditions at the mall. Maya, a veterinary doctor, declared Ivan and Ruby must go to live in a Zoo.
was placed with other elephants she could play and run with.
Ivan was given a family of four children and a mother to be a father
to. Ivan was finally happy, a true Mighty Silverback, a family to
love, protect and play tag with. It didn’t take Ivan long to learn
how to climb trees again.
was based on a true story! Gorillas are very intelligent animals.
Ivan observed and understood more than most humans gave him credit for.
His artwork gave him a chance to reflect his wishes, thoughts and dreams.
make a profit off them. Animal cruelty with abuse should be punishable by sending those convicted to jail