Koko the gorilla’s caregivers showed her meeting Robin Williams in 2001 at The Gorilla Foundation’s Woodside, California preserve in a 2014 memorial film.
Robin Williams is regarded as a talented comedian who, regardless of the initial ambiance, could stroll into any room and make everyone in it laugh within minutes.
When he died in 2014, people all across the world were horrified and stunned, especially as details of his depression and personal troubles surfaced in the aftermath.
Six years later, this great actor, comedian, and singer is still remembered and adored. Williams had a unique ability to interact with individuals from all areas of life, and one of the relationships he formed was with Koko, a gorilla who had been trained in sign language.
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Williams’ unique capacity to brighten people’s lives is demonstrated in the film. In fact, it was because of his talent that he and Koko met in the first place.
Koko and other gorillas were being cared for by the Gorilla Foundation, which had reached out to the celebrity.
Another gorilla named Michael, Koko’s best friend and playmate, died a few months ago.
The charity intended to reach out to Robin Williams in order to find a way to cheer her up when her partner died and she became sad, reclusive, and despondent. The comedian offered to help cheer up the gorilla.
Williams reacted on the incident in a TODAY interview shortly after it occurred:
“We shared something extraordinary: laughter,” Williams said. “Koko understands spoken English and uses over 1,000 signs to express her feelings and ideas about everyday events, life, love, and even death. It was incredible and unforgettable.”
The clip of their meeting, which was taken only a short time after their meeting, shows how at ease the two were around each other. Williams is teased by Koko, who steals his glasses to try on for herself and picks his pocket and rummages through his wallet.
When Koko learnt of Williams’ death some years later, in 2014, she was shocked and grieved. Koko’s carer at The Gorilla Foundation reported she glanced down and stopped moving when she learned Williams had died. A few moments later, she signed “weep” in American Sign Language. The passing of the comedian appears to have affected and grieved the elderly gorilla lady.
Koko passed away in 2018 at the age of 46, which is a mature age for a gorilla.