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Memorial planned for Southern Resident killer whale J35's calf

A memorial is scheduled for September 21 to honor a Southern Resident killer whale calf lost this summer. Its mother gained national attention for carrying the calf for more than two weeks.

A memorial is scheduled next week for the Southern Resident killer whale calf that died in late July.

J35, also named Tahlequah, captured national attention this summer when she carried her dead calf for two weeks and more than 1,000 miles.

The memorial will be held Friday, September 21 at Occidental Square Park in Seattle's Pioneer Square.

A Facebook event invites attendees to dress in black and white and bring personal cards, letters, and drawings to present at a community altar.

Organizers plan to lead a procession from Pioneer Square to the Federal Building at 915 2nd Avenue.

Related | Young orca J50 presumed dead by Center for Whale Research

Whale experts said they have seen orcas mourn their offspring before, but J35 clung to her calf for an unusually long period of time.

Researchers worried J35 was not eating properly and spending too much energy pushing the corpse of her calf. However, there were never plans to intervene, and NOAA wildlife biologists said the idea of separating the pair was "not on the table."