People in LaGrange County got to witness a special flight on Sunday. The Soarin’ Hawk Raptor Rehabilitation Center released an American bald eagle in Shipshewana, Indiana, after four months of rehab. Many call the eagle “Lady Eagle.” Others call her “Shipshe,” a nickname for Shipshewana, the town where they found her.

“She is very bullheaded,” said Lisa Yates, a volunteer for Soarin’ Hawk. “She’s stubborn. She’s sweet. She’s everything. She wanted to go home, you can tell. She’s been trying to get out of her cage.”

Yates got a call in October 2015 from James Price, a conservation officer for the Indiana Department of Natural Resources.

“We received a call from a private citizen about an injured bald eagle, which actually doesn’t happen very often,” Price said. “So, it’s a pretty big deal to us.”

Lady Eagle was lying in some brush, suffering with a bruised wing and leg. The first step of her rehab with Roarin’ Hawk was x-ray examinations. Later, they began wing strengthening through creance flying. This is an excercise where one end of a 300-foot rope was tied to Lady Eagle and the other end to a rehabilitator. They would then send the bird the air. When she would fall, they’d send her up again to build her strength. Near the end of her rehab, she would do 20 to 60 repetitions a day.

About 80 people came to see “Lady Eagle” take her homecoming flight.

“It’s pretty crazy how I could see an eagle up close and that it’s wingspan is twice my span of my arms,” said 8-year-old, David Harmeyer.

Bird enthusiast Suzanne Lawson brought her camera to take photos.

“I thought it was fabulous,” she said. “It was a once in a lifetime opportunity. Never seen anything like it.”

For Yates, who endured the entire rehab process with Lady Eagle, it was a moving day.

“When you see me take the lid off the box, I literally sat down and cried,” she said. “It’s an awesome feeling. This is one of my favorite birds in the whole world.”

There was a romantic motive behind releasing Lady Eagle on February 14.

“We’re hoping she has a mate out there and that’s why we wanted to put her back out on Valentine’s Day.”

While Soarin’ Hawk works with red tail hawks weekly, bald eagles rarely come in to their center.

Lady Eagle is only the second bald eagle they’ve worked with in the last few years. To see more of her rehabilitation and homecoming flight, check out Soarin’ Hawk’s website.