"The Gorilla Foundation is sad to announce the passing of our beloved Koko," their statement read, according to NPR. "Her impact has been profound and what she has taught us about the emotional capacity of gorillas and their cognitive abilities will continue to shape the world."
Koko's legacy was one of innovation as she bridged the gap between human and animal with her ability to use and understand sign language. She used that sign language, in fact, to ask for a kitten, which she later received and named "All Ball."
All Ball was later tragically killed , so we can only hope the two BFFs are together now.
Her life was rich, complex, and powerful — another similarity she shares with humans. Rather than highlight the ways we were different, Koko showed the world how we were actually all the same. She was a symbol of peace and love for many people, which is why her death hits so hard.
"Not sure what it says about me, or this particular moment in history, but finding out that Koko died really fucked me up today."
"could have taken literally anyone but koko. ANYONE. why god have you forsaken me??!?!"
Koko was 46 years old when she passed, but her impact will be felt for years to come.