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If you grew up in the early 60's, you probably remember 'Flipper' - basically, the 'Lassie' of the marine world. It was a hugely popular show at the time: you had a really smart dolphin, a cute kid named Bud, and a whole lot of adventure. Five different dolphins played 'Flipper' but the one used most of the time was Kathy.
She was trained by Ric O'Barry - who was instrumental in the making of 'Flipper.' Not only did Ric train the dolphins to do their tricks, he captured them in the first place. When it came to training dolphins for entertainment , Ric was THE guy - making lots of money, buying a new Porsche every year. But all that changed the day Kathy died in Ric's arms. He says she couldn't deal with captivity any more. So, she stopped taking breaths and committed suicide.
At that moment, Ric said no more: no more capturing dolphins, no more tricks, no more exploiting them for profit.
And for the past 40 years or so, he's dedicated his life to freeing dolphins. He speaks at conferences, takes part in campaigns to get people to stop going to dolphin shows, and he's rescued more than 25 captive dolphins in the U.S., South America and the Carribean. Ric also worked on the Oscar-winning documentary 'The Cove' - which exposed the cruelty of the dolphin hunt in Japan. Now, he works with the Save Japan Dolphins Campaign and leads an international effort to stop the killing and trafficking of one of the world's most intelligent creatures.