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By Alisha Tomlinson
“He brings so much joy, literally, to everybody, I couldn’t keep him all to myself,” said his guardian angel, Alisha Tomlinson, who sends “a subtle message of vegetarianism,” according to The Charlotte Observer, Charlotte, NC, May 27, 2008.
Alisha posted the following memorial tribute to Mr. Joy on Jan. 10, 2009:
I am sad to report that Mr. Henry Joy, gentleman rooster, therapy chicken and beloved friend, passed away peacefully Thursday, January 8th, 2009. In his 9 years of life, he touched many lives proving that when it comes to love, neither size nor species are important.
Mr. Joy had a special knack for making people smile. He loved riding in his tiny basket, meeting people all over North Carolina at charity fundraisers, art galleries and pet parades. He reached a worldwide audience through his website Mr.Joy, with fans as far away as New Zealand that appreciated his special charm and message of animal sentience. Mr. Joy helped enlighten many folks to the plight of chickens raised in factory farms, but he may be most well known for his work as a therapy pet.
Mr. Joy visited nursing homes and assisted living centers locally, bringing smiles and laughter to many elderly and disabled residents. His therapy work gained nationwide attention through television, radio and newspaper stories, allowing him to reach an ever wider audience.
Although he had a busy “work” schedule, Mr. Joy spent plenty of down time, just being a chicken. Mr. Joy leaves behind his adoring wives, Henrietta and BeBe and two human parents who were blessed to know him.
To learn more about chickens, visit United Poultry Concerns, Image Gallery and 45 Days: The Life and Death of a Broiler Chicken.
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