MONROEVILLE, Ala. (WSFA) - If someone mentions Monroeville, Alabama, the first thing that may come to mind is Harper Lee and her classic book To Kill a Mockingbird. Well now, there’s a new bird in town and it seems to have everyone talking.
It all started a few months ago at Whitey Lee Park.
"We are walking around the park and a rooster starts crowing, and I'm like there shouldn't be a rooster here?" said Monroeville City Clerk Mary Jackson.
"What in the world?" said Monroeville resident Fred Kelley. "I did double take and there were some other people there, I said did you see that chicken?"
The chicken seemed to just join the families of ducks and geese and make his home at the lake. Residents got used to seeing him out there, but they started to notice something wasn’t right.
"He started limping one day so our animal control officer caught him and took him to the vet," said Kelley. "I thought he would make dumplins out of him."
"He broke his drumstick," said Monroeville veterinarian Dr. John Grider.
Dr. Grider's been practicing for more than 45 years, it's only the second time he's seen a chicken.
"I felt like I could fix it so we fixed it."
The story of the roaming rooster with a steel pin in its leg began to spread. It was so talked about the paper held a contest to name him.
"My favorite name was Gregory Peck," said Penelope Hines with the Monroeville chamber of commerce.
But the name Whitey Lee won out! That’s the name of the park where he was found and also the name of a prominent businessman from Monroeville.
And there’s more. Whitey Lee’s been in the newspaper, on the news, signed some autographs, and now he’s been named the marshal for this year’s Christmas parade.
Seems like the whole town is going to the birds.
"We even have him a little cage to ride in on top of a truck with a star on it," said Kelley.
A star is born. Whitey Lee, the coolest clucker in town.