UPDATE, 7:20 a.m. March 7: Dianna Hanson, the 24-year-old Brier woman killed at a wild cat refuge in Dunlap, Calif., Wednesday, also worked as a lifeguard for the city of Shoreline. Her Facebook page notes that she had worked as a lifeguard for the city since 2005. The city of Shoreline operates a public pool at 19030 1st Avenue NE, offering public swimming, swim lessons, exercise and lifeguard training.
Also Wednesday, Hanson’s father, Paul Hanson, issued the following statement:
“Today, my beloved daughter Dianna (age 24) was killed in a work accident at Cat Haven, a big cat refuge near Dunlap, CA. She was killed while working in the lion’s cage. It’s made the national news.
“Dianna really loved her 6-month internship at Cat Haven. She and I drove down there from Seattle on Jan 1 & 2 She was so excited at working in Cat Haven and living in California. Once there, she gave me the tour and showed me all the big cats there with which she would be working. Of course, Dianna being Dianna, her favorites were the tiger and the lion, CouCous, who killed her today. You can see on her Facebook page all the big cats she loved so much down there. Especially the linx and the very docile cheetah, Tango. He’s in a lot of her posted photos.
“Please honor Dianna’s memory by helping her favorite cause: preserving the remaining big cats in the world. She would ask us to do that for her.
“Di, we will always love you. And we will miss you so much. But I know that you will be happy. For now, you truly are in the eternal “Cat Haven”
“I love you
Dianna Hanson, 24, of Brier, was killed Wednesday in an attack by a lion at a private wild animal park near Fresno, CA., according to media reports.
According to Hanson's Facebook page, she was an intern at Project Survival's Cat Haven, Her Facebook descriptions are lighthearted. About her position at Cat Haven, she said: "I'm pretty handy with a poop spoon."
King 5 news reported that Hanson, who loved wild cats since she was a child, was a graduate of Mountlake Terrace High School and Western Washington University (2011).
According to the King 5 report, "investigators were trying to determine why the intern was inside the enclosure and what might have provoked the attack, sheriff's Sgt. Greg Collins said. The facility is normally closed on Wednesdays, and only one other worker was there when the mauling happened, he said."
Hanson grew up in Lynwood.
The 100-acre California facility was permitted for the cats, and the 4-year-old lion that apparently mauled her, Couscous, was raised since he was a cub, according to King 5. Friends and supporters of the park and Dianna shared their thoughts on its Facebook page. The lion was shot and killed by deputies when park workers couldn't lure the lion away from Hanson after she was injured.