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Heartbreaking final goodbye between giraffe and zoo worker with cancer

Giraffe Gives Farewell Kiss to Terminally Ill Caretaker

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Giraffe Gives Farewell Kiss to Terminally Ill Caretaker

Giraffe Gives Farewell Kiss to Terminally Ill Caretaker
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Today in History for Dec. 27

Today in History for Dec. 27 Up next

Today in History for Dec. 27

He got one last kiss for the road.

After a 54-year-old zoo worker from the Netherlands discovered he had terminal cancer, he wanted to say goodbye to the zoo's giraffes, some of his closest friends.

A charity arranged for the man, known only as Mario, to visit the giraffes, whom he'd looked after his entire adult life, according to the Ambulance Wish Foundation.

Their reunion is incredibly touching. In a photo that made waves across the Web, Mario lies in a hospital bed, wrapped in blankets, while a giraffe leans over and plants a nice big lick on his face.

Kees Veldboer, founder of the Ambulance Wish Foundation, said the animals seemed to recognize Mario, according to KRON.

The foundation, a kind of "Make a Wish" for adults in the Netherlands, specializes in taking terminally ill patients to places they love or have always wanted to see. Ambulances in the foundation's fleet have been outfitted with extra large windows so that bed-bound passengers can take in the view while out on adventures, the Daily Mail reports.

Follow Mike Krumboltz on Twitter (@mikekrumboltz).

 

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