KENOSHA, Wis. - A Kenosha neighborhood and dedicated online community on Tuesday, Dec. 7 mourned the loss of one of their own – Carl, a beloved wild turkey.
Kenosha police said a truck driver accidentally ran over the bird Tuesday afternoon.
For many, a quick glimpse of Carl was enough to brighten their day. It may never been known why the turkey chose Kenosha’s Forest Park neighborhood as his home, but his death is impacting its residents.
Over the past year or so, the wild turkey became the main attraction on Pershing Boulevard. He gobbled up the attention from those who came to see him.
"He was very majestic looking, very beautiful. You know, he knew how to strike a pose," said Paulette Garin.
Garin new Carl as well as anyone on the street. The turkey would visit her just about every day, so she started taking pictures and looking out for him.
"I considered him a neighbor. You know, someone asked me if I thought he was a pet, and I said no. He was a wild animal, and I respected that. We didn't feed him," Garin said.
Credit: Paulette Garin
Neighbors created a Facebook group dedicated to Carl sighting and experiences. There, Garin learned the news that many only feared before.
"I grabbed sweats and my coat and I ran out. And by the time I got outside, he was gone," said Garin.
The news spread quickly. Brandon Koelling organized an impromptu celebration of life at Shenanigans – complete with a shot of Wild Turkey bourbon, in honor of Cark.
"We wanted to do a tribute to Carl, because Carl gave us a lot of good times," Koelling said.
Credit: Paulette Garin
Back in Forest Park, Garin said she will try to remember her feathered friend for what he brought to the city.
"If Carl was the vehicle of bringing people together and to do things collectively and peacefully and with joy in their heart, then maybe that's the takeaway," said Garin.
Garin told FOX6 News that the driver who hit Carl stayed at the scene to help police care for the turkey’s remains. Someone planted a cross in his honor, reading "Rest in Peace King Carl."
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