Dian Fossey (also referred to as “Woman in the Mist”) was an American “primatologist and a Conservationist” born on 16th/January/1932, San Francisco, California (United States of America ) to 26th/December/1985 (Murdered in cold blood in Rwanda), she was known for her extensive research and study on Mountain gorillas in Volcano National Park in Rwanda from 1966 until her death in 1985.
She released a book in 1983, called “Gorillas in the Mist” which covered her research on the Mountain gorillas and her personal life story in Karisoke Research Center , in 1987, a movie was released in the same title as her book, Dian was inspired to carry on her studies on the gorillas by a Paleotheologist known as Louis Leakey.
Fossey worked with Jane Goodall who studied ordinary chimpanzee and Birute Gildikas who was observing Orangutans, the three were known as “Trimates” and were sent by Louis Leakey to do research on the Great apes in their Natural habitats.
Fossey was a daughter to Kathryn “Kitty” (nee Kidd) who was a fashion model (Mother) and George E Fossey III (Father) who was an insurance agent, her parents divorced when she was just six years of age, her mother remarried a businessman man called Richard Price a year after and her father tried to keep in touch but all in vain because the contact was always discouraged by her father.
Fossey was never treated like a child at home by her stepfather and he offered her little emotional attention. Fighting for her dying love, Fossey turned her love to animals and adopted a “Goldfish” as her first pet throughout her whole life. At the age of six, she started Horse riding and this earned her a letter from her school and during her graduation in 1954, she had promoted herself as an “Equestrenne.”
Fossey did her education in schools like Lowell High School, studied a business course at the College of Marin but however, things changed when she spent her Summer at a ranch in Montana at the age of 19 years arousing her love for animals, She pursued a Pre-veterinary course in Biology at the University of California.
In 1963, came to Africa on a Seven weeks visit and she had borrowed $8,000 (One year’s savings) and also picked her savings to facilitate for her stay in Africa for all that long. However, earlier Fossey had turned down an invitation by the Henrys’ Family to join them on African tour due to lack of enough funds, she arrived In Nairobi, Kenya. While in Kenya, She met William Holden (An actor) who introduced her to John Alexander (Safari guide).
John became her tour guide throughout Kenya, Tanzania, Rhodesia and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Alexander’s itinerary had Tsavo national park, Lake Manyara (Large flocks of Flamingo), and Ngorongoro Crater for abundant wildlife. Olduvai Gorge (Tanzania) and Mt. MIkeno in Congo were her last areas of visit. While in Olduvai Gorge, Fossey met with Louis Leakey (An archeologist) and introduced her to Jane Goodall who was doing and excellent work and research about the Great Apes.