John and Ace first bought Christian at Harrod's in 1969. Today, it's illegal to buy a wild animal, and Harrod's, of course, no longer sells them. 

John says he and Ace wanted to help Christian the minute they laid eyes on him. "When we first saw him, [we were] so shocked that there was this beautiful creature for sale in a small cage, and the immediate reaction was, 'Get him out of there,'" John says. 

For the first six or nine months, Ace says he and John had no trouble taking care of Christian. "It was an adventure. We thought we could do better for him," he says. "As well as anyone, we could secure a future for him."


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