Michael’s Dream    <  Page 2  >

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Michael lived through the slaughter of his family.  He was tough, very few young apes survive this ordeal.  A European veterinarian found and took him to live in a zoo in Vienna.  At age three Michael was moved to the United States to live a very different life from that in the African rainforest.

On September 9, 1978, Michael joined Dr. Penny Patterson and Dr. Ron Cohn, and stayed with them the rest of his life.  It was there that he met Koko, learned sign language, and become the most loved, educated, and intelligent African-born silverback gorilla in the world.

Penny, Koko and The Gorilla Foundation caregivers taught Michael to “talk” in sign language, so he could tell them his wants and his needs.  Michael went way beyond their expectations:  he learned how to talk about his thoughts, feelings, and dreams.

Koko signs “smile” to young Michael, for Ron (taking the photo)


Michael’s Dream    <  Page 2  >

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