The beloved mountain gorilla that won worldwide fame, after posing in a viral selfie with an anti-poaching ranger, has recently passed away at the of 14. The majestic creature died in the arms of the man that saved her when she was just an infant.
In a heartbreaking photo, shared on Instagram by Virunga National Park, the two lifelong friends can be seen bonding for the very last time. Ndakasi can be seen lying her head on her carer and protecter’s chest, Andre Bauma, before giving her last breath.
The two went viral a couple of years ago, after posing in a selfie. “It is with heartfelt sadness that Virunga announces the passing of beloved orphaned mountain gorilla, Ndakasi, who had been under the care of the Park’s Senkwekwe Center for more than a decade,” the touching words read.
“On the evening of 26 September, following a prolonged illness in which her condition rapidly deteriorated, Ndakasi took her final breath in the loving arms of her caretaker and lifelong friend, Andre Bauma.” Ndakasi – like all the other primates that live in the Virunga park, Congo – was a symbol of hope and determination.
A great example of how much these magnificent creatures have to endure, only because of poaching. Ndakasi was first brought at the Senkwekwe Centre, in Viruga park, when she was only two-month-old. Back then, she was rescued by the park’s rangers, after she lost her mom – also due to poaching.
An endangered species, Viruga’s mountain gorilla are being protected by over 600 devoted rangers, who are always ready to put their lives on the line to protect these gentle giants. The beautiful friendship between Ndakasi and Andre, shows the deep, and so special bond, the rangers share with these innocent souls!