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Terminally Ill Zoo Worker Says Farewell To His Beloved Giraffes [Video]

Here is another beautiful reason that I love giraffes!

You might need a tissue or two for this bittersweet story.

A man only known as Mario has spent most of his adult life cleaning the giraffe enclosure as a maintenance worker for a Dutch zoo. The 54 year old has been terminally ill with cancer and when doctors told him that his days were numbered, he wanted just one thing.

Mario asked to have his hospital bed wheeled into the giraffe’s enclosure so that he could say farewell to the animals that he loved so very much.

Kees Veldboer, the man that transported Mario to the zoo and the founder of the Ambulance Wish Foundation said “These animals recognized him and felt that (things aren’t) going well with him.” As one giraffe in particular gave Mario a tender kiss on the cheek, Veldboer was very touched. “(It was) a very special moment. You could totally see him light up.”

Mario passed away just days after his farewell journey to the zoo.

See Mario’s beautiful send off in the video below. To get right to the giraffe’s kiss on Mario’s cheek, go to 4:18.

Here is another video that features more information about Mario.

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