The next baby orca whale to be seen off Whidbey Island’s shores may well be named in honor of victims of the Sandy Hook elementary school shooting in Connecticut where 20 children died.
“We at The Whale Museum are saddened along with our nation by the events that transpired in Connecticut and we would like to be part of the healing process … this week, there has been a conversation about naming a whale in honor of one of the victims of this tragedy,” said Jenny Atkinson, the museum’s executive director, in a release.
“Many of us first fell in love with the orcas as 6-year olds,” said Atkinson. A KING 5 story reported on a victim named Jessica, age 6, who had a particular love of orcas.
The Southern Resident orcas commonly seen around Whidbey are named once they approach one year in age.
“We have great hopes that there will be a baby orca to name next summer. If that’s the case, we could propose the name ‘Sandy’ in honor of victims and survivors of both of these tragic events,” Atkinson said.