San Antonio Zoo mourning loss of beloved Asian elephant named Karen

Officials said Karen had a ‘sassy, sometimes mischievous, personality’

Karen the elephant at San Antonio Zoo (San Antonio Zoo)

SAN ANTONIO – The San Antonio Zoo family is mourning the loss of one of the herd — Karen the elephant.

Karen passed away Wednesday afternoon at the age of 52, according to a Facebook post from the San Antonio Zoo.

The Asian elephant surpassed the average life span of her species of elephant by five years.

“She brought millions or people closer to elephants than they could ever have imagined, and we are honored to have had the opportunity to care for her,” zoo officials said in the post on social media.

Karen will be remembered for her “sassy, sometimes mischievous, personality” and for keeping the zoo crew, volunteers and guests smiling.

Karen originally arrived at the zoo in 2016, joining the other elephants — Nicole and Lucky.

Together, the trio of elephants was affectionately referred to as the Golden Girls.

“Please keep our animal care staff and elephants in your thoughts and prayers as we mourn the loss of this family member,” zoo officials said. “Rest easy, sweet Karen – we are all better because we knew you.”

It is with heavy hearts that we announce the loss of Karen, one of our beloved Asian elephants. Karen passed away this...

Posted by San Antonio Zoo on Wednesday, March 9, 2022

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Mary Claire Patton has been a journalist with KSAT 12 since 2015. She has reported on several high-profile stories during her career at KSAT and specializes in trending news and things to do around Texas and San Antonio.