Who can forget the images of Sam the koala (at the time, a wild koala caught up in the disastrous Black Saturday bushfires in Victoria earlier this year) holding hands with Country Fire Authority firefighter David Tree and sipping from his water bottle. They were beamed around the world and became the symbols of hope in the days following the disaster.
In the time since the bushfires Sam was been healed of her burns received in the fires but she has now succombed to an illness that is taking its toll of Victoria's koala population, chlamydia. Sam was euthanased on Friday as a result of cysts brought on by the disease.
The image of Sam taking water from David Tree's water bottle is one that will stay in my mind. It created a wonderful picture of trust between the two and a willingness for a wild creature to accept help from a human in its moment of need. It was moving indeed and her passing is now a sad moment in the history of our bush.