Seedor Yai (Mr. Big in Thai) is massive, standing an impressive 2.8 metres and weighing 4 tons. Like most of the elephants in north Thailand, Seedor Yai worked as a logging elephant until his elderly owner retired, retiring his bull with him. When the owner became ill and no longer able to support both his bull and his family, he made the difficult decision to sell his elephant. Several potential buyers interested in returning the bull to logging made generous offers. Aware of the reputation of BLES, the owner’s concern for Seedor Yai’s welfare led him to offer Katherine first right of refusal.
If Katherine could raise the funds to satisfy the owner’s financial difficulties, the owner felt assured that his beloved elephant would enjoy the retirement he had envisioned. As the owner’s illness progressed, his need to confirm Seedor Yai’s future accelerated and Katherine was under pressure to generate funds.
Katherine launched a fundraising campaign and hours were spent promoting Seedor Yai’s cause. Her determination succeeded, and the owner lived long enough to enjoy the resolution of his elephant’s welfare and his family’s finances. Seedor Yai died unexpectedly January 2014 found early one morning already dead with no known cause. He was dearly loved and his absence is a great loss to BLES.