ByKarly Rayner, writer at Creators.co
Editor/Senior staff writer | Movie Pilot's celebrity savant.
Karly Rayner

The American woman who was mauled to death by a lion in a South African safari park has been identified as Katherine Chappell - a 29-year-old special effects editor who has worked on shows and movies such as Game of Thrones, Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Divergence.

The tragic accident occurred at the popular Lion Park in Johannesburg on Monday afternoon when a lioness attacked Chappell through an open window in the vehicle she was travelling in. The special effects editor was raising money for a charitable organization that protects animals from poachers at the time of her death.

The car Chappell was travelling in after the attack
The car Chappell was travelling in after the attack

According to the wife of a tour guide who suffered a heart attack trying to save Katherine by fighting off the lion, the 29-year-old was attacked whilst trying to take a photograph through the open window. The statement that Mrs. Potgeiter released to the press reads:

"The tourist had a camera and, of her own accord, rolled down the passenger window in order to take photographs. A lion then attacked the tourist through the open window. Mr. Potgieter tried to fend the lioness off and in the process sustained injuries to his arm. When the lion retreated, Mr. Potgieter saw that the tourist had sustained extremely serious injuries. She was bleeding profusely from her neck. Under the circumstances Mr. Potgieter tried his best to stop the bleeding and save her life. He applied constant pressure to stop the bleeding, while calling for help."

Chappell alongside Game of Thrones' Thomas Schelesny
Chappell alongside Game of Thrones' Thomas Schelesny

Katherine Chappell's sister, Jennifer, confirmed the identity of her late sibling by releasing a tribute on Facebook, it reads:

"We are broken-hearted to share this news with our friends and family: Yesterday morning, while on a volunteer mission to protect wildlife in South Africa, Kate Chappell was involved in a tragic and fatal accident.

Katie was a brilliant, kind, adventurous and high-spirited woman. Her energy and passion could not be contained by mere continents or oceans. She was very much loved and shared her love for life with those she met.

We cannot thank everyone enough for the kind words and support. It means the world to us during this difficult time."

The keen Star Wars fan pictured with Peter Mayhew
The keen Star Wars fan pictured with Peter Mayhew

Although Katherine Chappell was American, she had been living and working in Vancouver since 2013 after relocating to realize her dream of becoming part of the movie industry.

Chappell worked for the award winning visual effects company, Scanline, as a video editor and helped create graphic effects for Game of Thrones, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Noah and The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.

Katherine Chappell with British actor, Stephen Fry
Katherine Chappell with British actor, Stephen Fry

The 9-year-old Lioness that killed Chappell will not be put down for after the attack, Lion Park wrote on Facebook that:

"We would like to assure everyone that we will not euthanize the lioness. The lioness will remain under our care"

(Source:

The Mirror, The Daily Mail and Instagram)
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