On the back of a sea turtle his life's work helped save, the remains of oceanographer Tony Amos were carried gently into the sea.
Hundreds gathered to pay a final tribute to oceanographer Tony Amos along a beachside named in his honor, where Amos himself devoted his life to preserving and protecting marine life in the Gulf of Mexico.
Amos passed away in the days following Hurricane Harvey after a long battle with cancer.
As founder of the Animal Rehabilitation Keep (ARK) in Port Aransas, Texas, Amos led efforts to help the endangered turtles that call the Coastal Bend home during nesting season. His lifelong devotion to the area's wildlife did not go unnoticed.
"This is a special send off to an incredibly special man that was so beloved to the community and to folks involved with marine wildlife conservation," Dr. Donna Shaver, with Sea Turtle Science and Recovery described.
As crowds gathered around the waterfront, a sea turtle rescued and rehabilitated by ARK made his way, one step at a time, towards the sea.
"Come on little turtle, off you go. The sun's about to set," urged Amos' wife, Lynn Amos.
On the back of that turtle rested Amos' ashes, bound for the gulf he so loved. It had been Amos' wish to have his ashes scattered into the sea, and his community gathered to ensure that wish was fulfilled. They shared stories of how Tony captivated the lives of those around him.
"Tony Amos was massively gentle, endlessly amused by the absurdity of life," said Michael Amos, his son, who described his father as, "charming, professionally objective, talented, achieved and genuinely fascinated by the subjects he chose to speak on."
Dr. Shaver added, "If there's one thing I really learned from Tony to pass on, its just taking the time to talk to people and educate them, and inspire them, because we need the next generation...all of us will leave this earth and we need to know somebody will be here to carry on and help save these animals for future generations."
Amos' son, at last, sprinkled his father's ashes onto a turtle named Picasso, who was then released back into the ocean as the sun neared the South Texas horizon.