The 18th Rameses, a staple to UNC football games, passed away on Thursday night, and the owners are already talking to a taxidermist about stuffing him.
Chris Hogan, a member of the family that has raised Rameses since the 1920s, said that the 18th Rameses died of natural causes. Although the Hogans haven’t stuffed any of the previous animals, they decided the 18th was especially attractive, and they would work to preserve him.
The family decapitated the animal, buried the body, and plans to preserve the head.
“We knew this was coming,” Hogan said, noting that nine years is a normal lifespan for a ram. “We were really pleased that we got through this last season with him actually.”
The decapitated body of the 18th Rameses as well as his 17 predecessors are buried in unmarked graves on the farm, Hogan said.
“That’s really all I know that we’ve ever done with them,” Hogan said.
Rameses’ head is preserved above ground so that it can be mounted, he said.
Rameses’ son will soon take on a name change and be called Rameses the 19th. He will be at the next season’s football games to rally UNC fans.
“He might be dragging me across the field, but he’ll be there,” Hogan said.
Read The Daily Tar Heel’s account of Rameses’ death, and check back for more on his legacy in March.