As you may have heard, The Gorilla Foundation sadly shared that Koko the gorilla passed away in her sleep on June 19th. People the world over have been moved by Koko and her story, as well as the two other gorillas at The Gorilla Foundation, Michael, who became part of Project Koko, learning American Sign Language with Koko until his passing in 2000, and Ndume, who was brought to The Gorilla Foundation from the Cincinnatti Zoo in the hopes of forming a bond with Koko, and currently still resides there.
As humans we tend to be intrigued, if not deeply passionate about our fellow great apes. We often see so much of ourselves in them, but also so much of them in ourselves. We are mesmerized by the beautiful, creative, unique, complicated, intelligent and emotional individuals they are.
We’ve been touched this week by friends of the chimpanzees who have chosen to make a difference in their lives by sponsoring days of sanctuary as a way to honor Koko and the unique person she was.
Arva Roland sponsored today’s day of sanctuary “in memory of Koko, a very special gorilla.” Our hearts and thoughts are with all those who cared for and loved Koko.
Koko (photo credit to Ron Cohn and The Gorilla Foundation):
Arva, thank you for your compassion and for remembering Koko today. Your heartfelt gift makes a lasting difference in the lives of the chimpanzees and we appreciate you including them as you honor Koko and her life.
Foxie and Jamie: