Donna the Hippo has been a fixture at Mesker Park Zoo since 1956 and has brought so many smiles to so many faces over the years. Many regular visitors to the zoo have literally grown up with Donna and she with them. Officials at Mesker Park Zoo have announced that because of Donna's failing health, including severe arthritis and kidney failure, she will be euthanized later today.

According to the zoo's Facebook page post yesterday, "Fans, it is with heavy hearts we have to make this announcement. Tomorrow at the consultation from our vet, we will have to humanely euthanize Donna, our hippo."

Donna is the oldest hippo in captivity and last year, on August 7th, Donna turned 60 – with a huge party at Mesker Park Zoo to celebrate Donna's birthday.

While Zoo officials say Donna's quality of life has deteriorated tremendously over the last few weeks, which makes this action necessary, there was a call to the zoo by someone who did not identify themselves, expressing dissatisfaction and disagreement with the decision.

Donna has lived a good life and has served our community well - she will be missed by all. Thank you Donna for all of the happiness you have given us for so many years, travel well, we love you.