Read: Viral Newspaper Obituary Of 'Big Mama' The Chicken


A Texas family’s heartwarming obituary for their pet chicken, Big Mama, has unintentionally resulted in waves of compassion for animal welfare.

The late chicken has skyrocketed to fame, filling the hearts of strangers with a fondness for a chicken they never knew.

When Big Mama passed away, her family, Stephanie and Gregory Sword and their two sons, saw it fitting to honor their lovely lady with a paid obituary.

“Not many chickens deserve an obituary, but she does,” the family wrote for the newspaper appearance.

In the wake of her late January passing, people have taken notice of how special Big Mama was to her family.

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A song was written in her memory, her story has appeared in news publications, and she now even has her own Facebook page.

Big Mama was set to be euthanized before she joined the Sword family in Sept. 2013. Prior to her adoption, Big Mama lived a solitary life in a Houston apartment.

The 6-year-old Rhode Island Red didn’t know how to behave like a chicken. She didn’t know anything about grass or bugs or dirt or the joy of living with a flock.

Everything changed when the Sword family saw a poor quality photo of the skinny chicken staring at herself in a mirror, needing a new home.

The family instantly knew that Big Mama was meant to join their flock.

Admittedly, Big Mama had some catching up to do in terms of learning how to chicken. “She refused to go in the chicken coop at times, and she would try to come into the house,” Stephanie Sword explained.

Eventually, Big Mama came to love life in her natural environment. “She came into her own and flourished as a chicken should: living in a flock, outdoors, free-ranging,” Sword expressed.

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So when Big Mama passed, it seemed only fitting to honor the clucky lady with a rather heartwarming sendoff.

People responded with sweet condolences and gentle humor, even asking if they could attend her funeral.

The family never imagined their heartfelt obituary would attract nationwide fame. But in the name of all “throwaway” pets, they are glad Big Mama has raised such a ruckus.

“We’re just hoping that the story of Big Mama will remind others that every life, even that of a chicken, is valuable and worth saving,” Sword explained. Rest easy, big hen.

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A graduate of Grand Canyon University, Kim Davis has been writing for The Western Journal since 2015, focusing on lifestyle stories.
Kim Davis began writing for The Western Journal in 2015. Her primary topics cover family, faith, and women. She has experience as a copy editor for the online publication Thoughtful Women. Kim worked as an arts administrator for The Phoenix Symphony, writing music education curriculum and leading community engagement programs throughout the region. She holds a degree in music education from Grand Canyon University with a minor in eating tacos.
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