VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — A 25-pound rabbit that served as Virginia's official Easter Bunny, as well as a service animal for a U.S. Army veteran, has died.
The Virginian-Pilot reported the news on Thursday, although the animal died in November after an illness.
Lord Roland Watson Beldon Maxwell VIII was known as Junior. The rabbit was 3 1/2 feet long and belonged to Angela “Max” Maxwell of Virginia Beach.
The 56-year-old was grazed on her face by a sniper bullet while serving in Desert Storm. She rarely ventured out in public without Junior.
Maxwell had planned to tour the U.S. this year with the bunny. It was going to be a write-in candidate for president.
Junior's feet were a size 4 1/2 in women's shoes. They strained his joints, and his “heart just couldn't take it,” Maxwell said.
Maxwell had taken him to a veterinary clinic once a month where students were studying him.
He had turned 5 years old by the time he died. That's the average lifespan of his breed.