Rangers from Virunga National Park in the Congo saved a 2-month-old gorilla named Ndakasi from the bush in 2007. Poachers had killed her mother, and she was found with her mother’s body in her arms.
But Ndakasi’s story is one of kindness and love, even though she came from a bad place.
After being saved from the wild, Ndakasi quickly met Andre Bauma, who was in charge of the park’s gorilla orphanage. Bauma never left the little gorilla’s side during her first night away from her mother, which was a scary time for her.
The park workers said, “Andre held baby Ndakasi tight to his bare chest all night during a terrible storm to keep her warm and give her comfort.”
But Bauma and the other people who worked at the home were not the only reason Ndakasi made it through the night. She would have a happy, healthy childhood in the end.
In 2019, the park shared a sweet photo of Ndakasi with her family.
Given the circumstances of her rescue as a helpless child, Ndakasi’s life was a gift every day. But it was cut short too soon, which was a shame.
This week, Ndakasi, a 14-year-old gorilla, died of a sickness, according to the people who took care of him. Even though she died at such a young age, her last moments showed how much love she had left behind.
The park says that “Ndakasi took her last breath in the loving arms of her carer and lifelong friend, Andre Bauma.”
Even though Ndakasi is no longer with us, we will always remember her. And the people who gave her a second chance at happiness will keep working to give young gorillas like her hope.
The guards at the refuge in Virunga National Park wouldn’t have it any other way.
Bauma said, “There’s a link between us.” There is “a very, very close relationship” between the guards and the gorillas.