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#1097 Koko the gorilla mourns for Robin Williams

Robin Williams with Koko in 2001; photo clip from video below

Robin Williams with Koko in 2001; photo clip from video below

I still can’t wrap my mind around the despair that led Robin Williams to commit suicide. That his comedic genius is now legacy, that he will make no more films, seems impossible.

We humans are not the only ones saddened by his death. Koko the gorilla, who has never known life in a natural habitat, is also deeply affected.

She first met Robin Williams in 2001. They spent a day together. For the first time since she had lost her beloved gorilla companion, Michael, Koko smiled. After six months of sadness, Koko experienced joy in the company of this special man.

When Penny Patterson, co-founder of The Gorilla Foundation, told Koko of Robin Williams’s death, the great ape mourned. She and Williams had made a deep and lasting connection. When Koko learned of the death of her friend, she exhibited a sadness clear in her photographs.

Millions of us miss you, Robin Williams, perhaps even billions. That you are as deeply missed by one of our simian relatives is yet more confirmation of your beautiful soul. Rest in peace, and thank you for years of deep and loving laughter.


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Naomi Baltuck - August 26, 2014

Oh, Cathryn, this made me cry. For those gentle moments of pleasure and kindness, and for all those people so desperately unhappy that they had to take the path of no return, and for all those who were left behind. Thank goodness for those stolen moments to remember them by.

    Cathryn Wellner - August 31, 2014

    With your storytelling and writing gifts, Naomi, I am sure you have blessed many people with “gentle moments of pleasure and kindness” and a temporary release from unhappiness.

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