Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Death of Gypsy King

We received this e-mail yesterday morning:

Here is a picture of the last Post Office rooster to die of poisoning.

Two families of chickens had already succumbed to a mysterious poison there in late October.

"Gypsy King" lived in the banyan at the corner of Whitehead and Eaton Streets and always came toward people in a friendly and hopeful fashion.

He probably took the bit that killed him from someone's hand late on November 9, 2006. His heart beat strong but his breathing was failing. By nightfall the next day, Nov. 10, he was gone, despite heroic measures involving an aquarium air pump and mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.

He had very possibly been the rooster filmed by Country Music TV, Martha Stewart, and CBS Sunday Morning with Bill Geist when they did their shows on the Key West Gypsy chickens.

He will be missed.

The memorial and flowers will be placed by the banyan at 3 pm today, and Poet Kirby Congdon has offered to read a poem. The public is invited.

/s/ The Key West Chicken Lady
Katha Sheehan

This is the banyan tree where Gypsy King roosted at night and from which he launched each morning to roam in solitude on the Post Office grounds where up to twenty chickens once ate bugs and posed for tourists. Flowers and a photograph of GK, as well as e-mails of condolence from some fans of Key West chickens are all that remain now to speak of his time on the scene.

The chickens at the Post Office are all gone now; the hens, the baby chicks, the other roosters -- and Gypsy King. There are some ibises who come to eat insects on the lawn, but it's not the same.

First they came for the chickens, but I wasn't a chicken ...........

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