Cincinnati Freedom Has Died

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Cincinnati Freedom Has Died

By Barry M. Horstman
January 2009

Cincinnati Freedom, the fugitive cow that drew worldwide headlines when she escaped from a Camp Washington slaughterhouse in 2002 and eluded authorities for 11 days, has died at an animal sanctuary in New York.

The 1,050-pound white Charolais, Cinci for short, died at the Farm Sanctuary in Watkins Glen in December, shortly after being diagnosed with spinal cancer.

The quickly spreading cancer, which becomes apparent in cows only when the size of the tumor puts pressure on the animal’s legs, caused Cinci to lose the use of her back legs.

When Farm Sanctuary officials determined that the cancer could not be controlled and that Cinci could not hope to regain the use of her legs, they decided to humanely euthanize the cow, according to Natalie Bowman, the Farm Sanctuary’s communications manager.

Cinci became a folk hero in February 2002 when, moments before she was to be slaughtered, she jumped a six-foot fence at Ken Meyer Meats in Camp Washington and then evaded police and officials from the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals while foraging in Mount Storm Park.

After her capture, internationally famous artist Peter Max “adopted” the cow and paid to send her to the sanctuary in upstate New York. It was Max who named her Cincinnati Freedom.

“Over the years she had an amazing number of visitors, people who had read about her or seen her on TV and remembered her story,” Bowman said. “People from Ohio were always visiting.”

Like other animals that die at the sanctuary, Cinci has been buried on the grounds, Bowman said.

Originally published on Barry M. Horstman can be reached by email.

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