People often overlook just how similar gorillas and other primate species are to humans. It is easy to lump all animals together as being separate from humans and therefore fail to see the 'humanity' present in many species. The heartwarming story of Kwibi and Damian Aspinall serves as proof to this point.
Gorillas are seen by many as being wild and savage creatures. However, time and time again we see them establish powerful relationships with humans. Kwibi and Aspinall's relationship is one so powerful that it withstood the test of time.
After five years of being separated, Aspinall returned to the African jungle where he befriended Kwibi when the gorilla was very young. Aspinall was not sure if Kwibi would remember him and was worried that if he found him, the animal would become hostile.
Much to his surprise, he found the now fully grown ape, and they embraced each other as if no time had passed. Kwibi introduced his wives and children and even shared food with Aspinall. When it was time for Aspinall to leave, Kwibi held on to him to prevent him from going. Once he finally left, Kwibi followed him and the crew he was with all the way back to their camp.
This inspiring story goes to show that we still have much to learn about animals and their capacity to establish relationships beyond their own species.
Check out the video of Kwibi and Aspinall's moving reunion: