Katio Lucky was born in Beijing, China in 1912 to peasant parents. Against his parents’ wishes who feared he was too sick to survive the long journey, Katio signed on and in 1929, left for Thailand.
Once there, he was put to work feeding, grooming, and caring for a herd of eight elephants. He would feed them bananas, bamboo, tree bark and other fruit, and carefully groom their large bodies. He would speak to them and even sing them songs. Katio’s health began to strengthen and over time he grew to be strong and lively, an improvement he attributed to his elephants.
Until his death at age 72, Katio believed his journey from sickness to health, and from misery to joy, awas a direct result of the relationships he formed with his eight elephants.