For Millennials. By Millennials.

Koko The Gorilla Dies; Mourning Robin Williams Friend

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Koko the gorilla was a 49-year old ape who recently died in her sleep. Koko came into this world in San Francisco. Even when her name was ‘Hanabi-ko’, the world will always remember her as Koko- the gorilla. Koko was not ordinary; she learned an adapted version of American Sign Language or you could call it ‘Gorilla Sign Language’. Hard it must be to believe, but Koko the Gorilla was actually learning how to communicate. Her ability to understand surely got her a lot of attention from across the world. And well, it was not just understanding that the Gorilla was good at. She could even argue and respond to human emotions!

1 Koko’s Abilities Made Her a Celebrity

Koko the gorilla soon became a celebrity. She made some popular celebrity friends too. Koko herself counted Robin Williams and Betty White amongst her good friends. When Robin Williams visited Koko the gorilla in 2001, she made him chase her and even tickle her! Koko also picked his pocket and tried on his glasses as her own. Koko the gorilla probably recognized Robin Williams from one of his videos. Not just that, she even signed that she loved him!

About this friendship between Robin Williams and Koko the gorilla, Williams expressed,

We shared something extraordinary — laughter. Koko understands spoken English and uses over a thousand signs to share her feelings and thoughts about daily events — life, love, even death. It was awesome and unforgettable.

2 Koko Mourned Robin Williams’ Death

When Koko heard about Robin Williams’ death, she was noticeably sad. The gorilla stayed quiet and bowed her head down for a long while. Probably, the gorilla was missing her dear friend and was deeply saddened.

Koko is dead, but the influence she left on us might never die out. She was almost a friend to so many out there. It was just so unexpected that an ape could befriend humans, that too in a beautiful manner. After the death of Koko, The Gorilla Foundation expressed how she will always be remembered. The statement revealed,

Koko touched the lives of millions as an ambassador for all gorillas and an icon for inter-species communication and empathy. She was beloved and will be deeply missed.

The life of Koko the gorilla has surely changed our perspectives on our fellow animals: apes. You see we have always feared such animals. But in reality, we have just ignored how these are merely just boundaries. Even apes are capable of expressing love and empathy and embracing differences.

The friendship between Koko the gorilla and Robin Williams will always remain unforgettable. And mind you, Koko was a better friend than many of us out here!

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