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Gorilla (Colo) 2006 0001 - Grahm S. Jones, Columbus Zoo and Aquarium.jpg

The world's oldest gorilla died at an Ohio zoo

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She was the coolest animal I've ever worked with and caring for her was the highlight of my career.
Audra Meinelt, assistant curator

Colo, the world's oldest gorilla on record, died in her sleep Tuesday, the Columbus Zoo announced.

Colo, 60, outlived the average gorilla by more than two decades. She celebrated her 60th birthday December 22. She was also the first zoo-born gorilla in the U.S.

A malignant tumor was removed from under Colo's arm in early December, but it's not clear if the cancer was what led to her death, the zoo said.  

Her body will be cremated and her ashes will be buried at the zoo. Donations made in her memory will support the zoo's gorilla conservation programs

The zoo now has 16 endangered lowland gorillas, including five descendants of Colo.

Here's a look at Colo through the years.

She was beloved by those who worked at the zoo.

Almost immediately, Harambe references resurfaced.

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