Vegas Headliner Roy in Fight for Life
10/06/2003 at 12:00 AM EDT
Roy Horn, of the "Siegfried and Roy" wild animal act at Las Vegas's Mirage hotel-casino, signaled thumbs up on Sunday after undergoing a second operation to relieve pressure on his brain, a family friend tells Reuters.
Despite this gesture, the headliner reportedly is still fighting for his life after being attacked by a tiger.
During the duo's show Friday night, a 600-lb. 7-year-old male white tiger savagely mauled Horn, causing him to lose a large amount of blood. The performer, who turned 59 on Friday, remains in critical but stable condition at University Medical Center in Las Vegas, about two miles north of the Mirage hotel-casino.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported Sunday that Horn had suffered a stroke following surgery and was then forced to undergo a second operation.
The onstage attack began when the tiger grabbed Horn's forearm about halfway into Friday's show, said witnesses. When he attempted to fend off the tiger with his microphone -- hitting it in the face and saying, "No, no" -- the animal lunged and bit him on the neck and dragged him offstage, causing massive bleeding, they said.
The tiger is in quarantine, as required by Nevada law, reports NBC News.
At the time of the attack, handlers sprayed the animal with a fire extinguisher to detach him from Horn, who remained conscious as he was being rushed to the hospital, even telling the audience to remain calm and not provoke the tiger to attack anyone else. He also said, "Don't kill the cat," according to Amy Fink, a family friend.
Late Saturday night, Bernie Yuman (the longtime manager of Siegfried Fischbacher, 64, and Horn), announced that the duo's spectacle would be suspended indefinitely.