An American woman who was fatally mauled by a lioness in South Africa earlier this week was identified Wednesday as Katherine Chappell, an editor for “Game of Thrones” and movies such as “Divergent.”
The 29-year-old was “brilliant, kind, adventurous and high-spirited,” her family said in a Facebook posting Wednesday, adding that her “energy and passion could not be contained by mere continents or oceans.”
Chappell grew up in New York’s suburbs and a memorial service is scheduled for Saturday in Rye, N.Y., a director of the Graham Funeral Home told The Associated Press. He confirmed Chappell was the victim in Monday’s attack in the Lion Park nature preserve near Johannesburg.
Chappell’s mother, Mary Chappell, told The Journal News her daughter went to South Africa to work for two weeks as a volunteer at a different preserve, one dedicated to saving rhinoceroses and elephants. Katherine had hoped to make a movie about animal poaching, her mother said.
She spent the past year in Vancouver, Canada, working for a special effects company on projects including HBO’s “Game of Thrones” and the upcoming movie “Pan,” her mother said. The company would not comment.
The park where the mauling occurred allows lions to roam while tourists drive through. A park official said although visitors are ordered to keep their windows closed, Chappell was taking pictures through an open window before the attack. The driver, believed to be a local tour operator, was also injured and was hospitalized.
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