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Manager: Roy 'fighting for his life'

Performer helped by 'extraordinary will'

Well-wishers place flowers and cards at a tribute for illusionist Roy Horn in front of the Mirage hotel-casino in Las Vegas.
Well-wishers place flowers and cards at a tribute for illusionist Roy Horn in front of the Mirage hotel-casino in Las Vegas.

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Siegfried and Roy
Las Vegas (Nevada)

LAS VEGAS, Nevada (CNN) -- Roy Horn of the Las Vegas duo Siegfried and Roy, who was mauled by a white tiger last week during his act, "is totally aware that he is fighting for his life," show manager Bernie Yuman said Tuesday.

Horn, 59, remains in critical but stable condition at University Medical Center.

Dr. Derek Duke, a neurosurgeon treating Horn, said it was "miraculous" that he was alive. "Mr. Horn's injury was extremely severe," the doctor told reporters outside the hospital.

Horn suffered massive blood loss in the incident, officials have said, and also suffered a stroke after the mauling.

"The contributing factor to his current condition is his extraordinary will and strong physical attributes. These are significant elements in his ability to recover," the doctor said.

Duke said Horn was responding well to treatment. However, he said, "while we are pleased with his progress, he remains in critical condition.

"It will be quite some time before we know the full extent of his recovery. Every day that passes increases his chances for survival."

Monday, hospital officials said Horn was able to move his hands, feet, and give a "thumbs-up" signal.

Alan Feldman, a spokesman for the MGM Mirage Hotel and Casino on the Las Vegas strip, where Siegfried and Horn have performed tiger stunts and magic tricks for nearly 30 years, said good wishes have been pouring in from all over the world.

Hundreds of movie stars, singers and other admirers, including Elizabeth Taylor, Mick Jagger, Arnold Schwarzenegger and his wife Maria Shriver, Michael Jackson and former president George H.W. Bush, have sent messages, Feldman said. He said messages could be sent to Horn through the hotel's Web site.

"The outpouring of love and prayer domestically and globally is touching to us," Yuman said.

The accident happened Friday night about halfway through Siegfried and Roy's show. As the audience watched in horror, a 7-year-old white tiger named Montecore took Horn by the neck and dragged him offstage.

Audience members said Horn looked like a rag doll in the tiger's mouth. Crew members backstage sprayed a fire extinguisher at the cat to force him to release his grip. The tiger was in quarantine in accordance with state law.

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