In the wake of the world's oldest manatee in captivity's tragic death, a petition began to circulate on Change.org aiming to have a Confederate monument be replaced with a statue of Snooty.
"Snooty the Manatee has been a symbol of Bradenton, FL for almost 70 years. He suddenly passed away on July 23rd 2017 and was the oldest living Manatee on record in the world. Subsequently, there is a Confederate memorial statue that stands directly in front of the old courthouse just blocks away from the aquarium where Snooty resided," wrote the petition author Anthony Pusateri. "To honor Snooty's legacy as a positive icon in Bradenton, I propose that the negative symbol of racism and oppression that is the Confederate monument be relocated and replaced with a statue of Snooty the Manatee."
Pusateri proposes that the Confederate monument be moved to a museum to be out of the everyday public eye. His proposal states that a "more positive symbol" would be taking its place.
The proposal currently has 847 supporters, just 153 short of its overall goal.
Pusateri plans to send the petition to Bradenton City Mayor Wayne Poston, the Manatee County Board of Commissioners and the Bradenton City Council.
Snooty, the most popular manatee in the Tampa Bay Area, passed away Sunday morning after just turning 69 years old on Friday in what the South Florida Museum called a "heartbreaking accident".
Snooty was born on July 21, 1948 at the Miami Aquarium and Tackle Company. His birth was the first recorded manatee birth in human care.