Remembering Maisha: The Heartfelt Tale of an Elephant’s Unexpected Journey Beyond

In a profoundly saddening turn of events, we mourn the untimely passing of Maisha, an elephant beloved for her gentle spirit and heart of gold.

The shocking news of her departure on Saturday, June 26, has left us grappling with profound sadness and a sense of disbelief as we try to comprehend the circumstances surrounding her unexpected decline.

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The distressing journey began innocently enough when the Keepers noticed stiffness in Maisha’s front legs on an ordinary Monday.

Initially, there was no cause for alarm, as minor discomforts are common among elephants. However, as the days unfolded, the gravity of the situation became apparent.

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The stiffness spread, leaving Maisha unable to walk, lie down, drink, or chew despite her relatively normal outward appearance.

Efforts to alleviate her suffering were met with limited success, and the veterinary team found themselves baffled by the mysterious affliction.

Consultations with local and international experts yielded no clear answers.

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The symptoms resembled tetanus, yet no entry wound was found. Blood readings suggested a bacterial infection, but its source remained elusive.

Despite the tireless efforts to unravel the mystery, Maisha’s condition worsened. Her companions among the orphans stood by her side, offering reassurance through comforting rumbles.

Nabulu, Maisha’s devoted friend from their Nursery days, remained a constant presence.

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The support of fellow elephants and the unwavering dedication of the Keepers provided a poignant backdrop to the somber proceedings.

Despite moments of hope when her legs showed marginal improvement, tragedy struck on that fateful Saturday morning.

Maisha collapsed, and despite exhaustive efforts, she peacefully closed her eyes at around 2 o’clock, breathing her last in the company of those who loved her dearly.

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During Maisha’s last week on earth, she showcased a silent bravery that characterized her entire life. Facing an inexplicable affliction, she exhibited grace and courage, leaving behind a void that words struggle to fill.

Daphne once remarked that raising orphaned elephants is a “cocktail of joy, tempered with a good dose of tears.” Today, the tears are abundant.

Maisha’s impact reached far and wide, touching lives globally. Her nurturing presence played a pivotal role in shaping the lives of fellow orphans, leaving an indelible mark on their journey to recovery.

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Maisha’s Swahili name translates to ‘life,’ a poignant reminder of the vitality she brought to those around her.

We commit to delving deeper into the mysteries surrounding her decline in her honor. The legacy of Maisha will endure in the lessons we learn and the ongoing efforts to safeguard the well-being of elephants under our care.

For now, we memorialize Maisha with a smile, cherishing the life she lived and the love she shared.

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