Tom Rider of Scranton died Oct. 1.
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He was born Oct. 27, 1950, in Peoria Ill. He was a veteran of the Vietnam War. He lived most of his life on the road, doing various jobs, including a stint in the late 1990s taking care of elephants for the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus.
He became a passionate and well-known advocate for circus elephants. For more than a decade, he traveled around the country speaking out about the ways elephants are treated by circuses. Mr. Rider testified before Congress and several state legislatures in support of laws to improve the lives of elephants, and he appeared on television and in other public forums to advocate for the elephants that he affectionately referred to as his "girls." He contributed greatly to the public's understanding of how elephants are treated in captivity.
Private arrangements are under the care of the Kearney Funeral Home Inc., 125 N. Main Ave., Scranton.
Condolences: www.kear neyfuneralhome.com.
Kearney Funeral Homes
125 North Main Avenue Scranton, PA 18504
Published in Scranton Times on Oct. 8, 2013