Koko, gorilla famous for her mastery of sign language, dies at 46

Remigio Civitarese
Giugno 21, 2018

We are sad to report that Koko, one of the world's most beloved gorillas, has passed away at the age of 46.

The foundation will continue its work on conservation and preservation of gorillas with continued projects, including a sign language application featuring Koko.

"Koko's capacity for language and empathy has opened the minds and hearts of millions", the Gorilla Foundation said in its statement.

Things then moved to the Santa Cruz Mountains in 1979, where another gorilla called Ndume joined the project.

Koko was featured in multiple documentaries and appeared on the cover of National Geographic twice. The gorilla's 1978 cover featured a photo that the animal had taken of itself in a mirror.

Just three years later, Dr. Francine "Penny" Patterson and Dr. Ronald Cohn moved Koko, a second gorilla named Michael and the project to Stanford University and went on to establish The Gorilla Foundation.

Throughout her life, Koko adopted several felines, using sign language to give them names like All Ball, Lipstick and Smoky.

The two met for a video shoot in 2001.

The foundation has announced it will honour Koko's legacy with conservatons efforts in Africa, the great ape sanctuary on Maui and a sign language app for the benefit gorillas and children.

Koko and her longtime caretaker, Penny Patterson, are seen with a kitten.

Koko also built relationships with Mister Rogers, Betty White and Robin Williams.

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