Stella, a 2 year old female beluga whale, passed away over the weekend at SeaWorld San Antonio. Stella chose her moment of death, and did NOT, as some press suggests, die because she was trapped in a marine life based theme park that mistreats its giant creatures of the sea. In her final moments, she was surrounded in her death tank by her friends and family – the 7 other belugas being held at SeaWorld – and her trainer, Devin. They all had a moment to say their goodbyes, embracing each other between their fins as best their awkwardly shaped beluga bodies would allow. As the park officials describe, “She had achieved peak happiness. She looked up at the sky, and you could tell her little beluga mouth curled into a smile as she saw the whale light. A read-out of her last echolocation whale songs suggest she said ‘take me to whale heaven, I’m ready to meet you, Whale God.'”
Stella loved being the center of attention, catering to the hundreds of thousands of fans who came to pet her and ruin her skin with their human hand oils. She is survived by her mother, Indigo, who was born and raised at SeaWorld. She describes her daughter as a happy-go-lucky gal who loved swimming to and fro in their small enclosure: “Sure some whales live in the open waters, but Stella wasn’t one for the ocean. She was more than happy in her prison cell, I mean, tank.” Is what we think Indigo would have said if whales could speak English.
May she rest in peace. There will be a memorial in the Penguin Encounter. Raffi will remember her with his song “Baby Beluga” and he might sing an encore of “Banana Phone,” if the attendees ask politely.