Earthquake-surviving pig "celebrates" rebirth on 2nd anniversary of rescue

13:16, June 18, 2010      

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A pig who miraculously survived the devastating earthquake in southwest China's Sichuan Province in 2008 was treated to a birthday cake and a reunion with its former owners Thursday -- exactly two years after it was pulled out of the earthquake rubble.

The pig's former owners, Wan Xingming and his wife Liu Dahui, attended the celebration with soldiers from the Chengdu Military Area Command, who combed the the debris for survivors after the quake.

Dubbed "Zhu Jianqiang," which means "strong-willed pig," the pig devoured the corn-flour birthday cake as Wan and Liu patted him on the head with affection. Then everyone sang happy birthday to him.

His head held high like a superstar, the pig posed for photographs with his well-wishers.

He became a household name in China after being pulled from the rubble of Wan's pigsty on June 17, 2008, 36 days after the 8.0-magnitude earthquake that killed more than 90,000 people.

China's Internet users have heralded the pig as a symbol of the will to survive.

The pig survived on water and a bag of charcoal in the ruins of Sichuan's Pengzhou City. But his weight dropped to 50 kg from 150 kg during the five-week ordeal.

Fan Jianchuan, curator of a privately-owned museum in Dayi County, bought the pig for 3,008 yuan and promised to look after him for the rest of his life.

The pig, now weighing 200 kg, draws many visitors to the museum.

"If not for the quake, I'm sure the porker would have ended up on the dinner table," said Wan, 62.

Wan and his wife rebuilt the pig sty for two piglets they bought after the quake. "But they were not so lucky: both were slaughtered for New Year celebrations."

Source:Xinhua

(Editor:梁军)

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