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Today marks five years since beloved River Walk duck ‘George' was tortured, killed

No arrests ever made in case

SAN ANTONIO – Five years have passed since a well-known character along the River walk, known as George the Duck, was brutally killed.

In 2013, two men were caught on surveillance cameras strangling the bird and tossing George into the river.

“He was part of the River Walk because he was different. He didn’t look like just kind of tan and the Mallards,” said Larkin Buchanan, associate director of operations at the Original Mexican Restaurant & Bar, where George the Duck often hung out.

George was named by a busser at the restaurant after earning a reputation as a bird who loved to be around people and interact with patrons.

“He was a character,” Buchanan said. “He would go up to customers, kind of beg, peck at their pant legs to get a chip.”

“Everybody knew him. Everybody knew George,” said Xochitl Rena, an employee of Rio Rio next door to the Original Mexican Restaurant.

Rena never met George, but heard stories about him years after he died.

“He would walk up to your table, not be scared at all and let you carry him and pet him,” she said.

Private donors contributed $15,000 for information about the men responsible for killing George, but no arrests have been made.

“When I saw the video, I was disgusted,” Buchanan said.

The outpouring of grief, frustration and outrage was tremendous following the duck’s slaying.

“Thousands and thousands of people poured in with comments online,” said Buchanan.

That’s partly what led to a permanent memorial for George the Duck inside and outside the Original Mexican Restaurant.

Just below the outdoor memorial Tuesday, another quirky quacker was lounging.

Oddly enough, Buchanan said, he showed up a few months after George died. 

His name? Quackimodo.

“He was named by the same person, Nacho, who named George the Duck,” Buchanan said.

Like George, the duck’s appearance grabs your attention -- particularly, his crooked neck.

“It looks like he has a broken neck,” said Buchanan. “Many people have called Animal Care Services. They came and checked him out and he is perfectly healthy. He is living a life of leisure.”

But no duck, he says, can take the place of George. 

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