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One of the dark horse stars of Netflix's hit docuseries on the travails of former zookeeper and convicted felon Joe Exotic is now speaking publicly about losing his arm to a tiger attack in an ad for a personal injury law firm.
Kelci "Saff" Saffery, whose mauling was memorably recounted in an early episode of "Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness," appears in a new advertisement for Atlanta-based personal injury law firm Bader Scott, where he talks about the difficulties involved in a severe injury — like losing one's arm to a tiger.
He recounts in the ad about how he chose amputation over extensive physical therapy and the drawbacks that came with that.
"I had to relearn to live with just one hand, compared to the two I was used to for almost 30 years. I had to learn everything all over again, small things that you don't consider, like tying your shoes, buttoning your pants, putting on a T-shirt, getting ready in the morning became an obstacle," he said in the advertisement. "My job options are definitely more narrow; there's a lot of jobs that I psychically cannot do.
"Your injuries are permanent, they are life long, and your job is not," he concludes.
"As 'Tiger King' was viewed by millions of people, it makes Saff one of the most widely recognized incidents of personal injury at work in recent times. So when we decided we wanted to run a commercial to educate people on this subject, we knew that Saff was the perfect person to work with," Bader Scott founder Seth Bader said in a statement provided to Oxygen.com.
Saffery previously told Oxygen.com that he no longer works at Exotic's former zoo in Oklahoma and has moved past that part of his life.
“I chose to leave the park and every one involved behind me," Saffery said. He is now living and working a job in California, according to a profile in Esquire.
"Tiger King" — in which Saffery was a frequent interviewee throughout — focused on the exploits of Joseph Maldonado-Passage AKA Joe Exotic, who ran a big cat-focused zoo in Oklahoma before his eventual conviction in a murder-for-hire plot against animal rights activist Carole Baskin.
Exotic was recently moved out of medical isolation in prison, having been placed in quarantine due to concerns about the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
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