Koko the Gorilla meets Robin Williams

He was beloved by millions and brought so much joy to the world. Tragically, he took his own life back in August of 2014. He was diagnosed with anxiety and depression disorders. It is believed that the medication he was on—certainly contributed to his suicide by hanging himself on August 11th in Paradise Cay, California.

Robin was an entertainer with a curiosity all his own about life. The stage was set for him and people cheered. He was able to move people on screen and on stage. Some even laughed so hard their eyes were filled with tears of laughter. Many of us still cry for him, he will forever be missed by many.


His career started on stage—however more knew him as he played an alien (from the planet Ork) on the television series Mork and Mindy after appearing in a few other television series such as Happy Days. Who could ever forget those famous words he muttered on Mork and Mindy “Na-nu, na-nu!”.

As time passed, his acting career blossomed bringing him to the big screen with his first big break in cinema as Popeye the sailor man—a cartoon character brought to life (in live in a live action setting). His very last acting role from his incredible career was the voice of Dennis the Dog in the film Absolutely Anything (2015).


His humor even stretched far enough to befriend a Gorilla named Koko. It seemed that Robin Williams could even make animals laugh displaying his talents even further. The Gorilla he bonded with named Koko had been working with specialists over time, to learn sign language skills. Through this, these types of animals were and are even able to communicate together and with humans.


Koko was an interesting and rarely developed Gorilla. She was playful and inquisitive. When Robin Williams passed away, the handlers said that Koko actually began to cry that her friend was gone. Robin visited the Gorilla Foundation centre back in 2001 and she remembered him.

It is quite an amazing thing having a bond with an animal at that kind of level. It was rather cruel for those surrounding the gorilla to tell her that he died. While Robin visited with Koko he was the first one to make her laugh like that in an estimated six months of time.


Koko was originally loaned to a lady named Francine Patterson for her doctoral research, however she has since stayed with her and is now living at the Gorilla Foundation in Woodside, California. This area is not far from the Santa Cruz Mountains and 35 miles from San Francisco. She has her own specialty trailer and several outdoor play areas. Comparably, Koko has the vocabulary of a 3 year old child. She has mastered more than 1,000 words from modified American Sign Language. Koko was born on July 4th, 1971 at the San Francisco Zoo and is now 45 years old.

Perhaps her and Robin Williams will meet up with one another one day and continue to laugh together. This video shows them together.

More stories on Freak Lore

Scroll Up