Carole Baskin’s “dead” husband is actually alive.
The ‘Tiger King’ star’s missing ex-husband Don Lewis was reportedly found alive in Costa Rica, but the discovery didn’t make headlines until a year later.
During a November 2021 interview with ITV’s This Morning talk show, Baskin, 61, said Lewis, who was pronounced dead in 2002 after disappearing a few years earlier, is alive.
However, Baskin told the Post that she didn’t know he was alive until the sequel series “Tiger King” aired.
Baskin, the owner of Big Cat Rescue, told ITV the Department of Homeland Security has been in touch with her ex-husband.
“One of the really exciting things that came out of ‘Tiger King 2’ was that they produced a letter from Homeland Security and it said that an FBI special agent at Homeland Security contacted the Sheriff’s Detective George (Jorge). . Fernandez, which means this had to have happened after 2002 because Homeland Security didn’t even exist until 2002,” Baskin told the outlet at the time.
“They said my husband, Don Lewis, is alive and well in Costa Rica,” she revealed. “And yet all this drama was made about my having something to do with his disappearance, even though Homeland Security knew where he was.”
Lewis disappeared in 1997 at the age of 59 – and would be 84 if he were still alive today.
Baskin rose to fame in 2020 when she starred in the Netflix docuseries that followed the adventures of big cat handler Joseph Maldonado-Passage.
Throughout the series, Maldonado-Passage repeatedly accused Baskin of being connected to her former husband’s death after he mysteriously disappeared in 1997, just six years after their marriage. Baskin denied the allegations made against her, which notably included feeding Lewis’ body to her animals.
Mark Heim is a reporter for The Alabama Media Group. Follow him on Twitter @Mark_Heim.