We have been struggling to find the right words, to find the strength, and to accept the need to tell you all that several days ago, we lost Misha in an unexplainable accident. She was found in her habitat when we arrived for her morning feeding the night after a thunderstorm. We have poured over and dwelled for hours on end about what may have happened and can come to no certain conclusion. There were no clues as to what may have caused this heartbreaking and untimely loss. Whether by some accident of nature or an underlying physiological complication, this amazing cub, who touched each of our lives in a different way, was taken from us far too soon and now, we find it difficult to express how much grief we feel.
In only three weeks, Misha showed us so much of herself and put her entire being in her new life at the Sanctuary. She embraced every new opportunity and was eager and curious to learn and explore what her home had to offer her, including her new friends. Misha found nurturing and comfort in her human caregivers at IEAS, forming unique bonds with each of us individually. Whether she viewed us as a friend, mother, father, or sibling, Misha showed us just how intelligent, bright, and thoughtful she really was. Her confidence grew by the day, and it took little more than looking into her expressive eyes to fall in love with her. The understanding and acceptance she had for her new family and the security that she found in each of us gives us reconciliation in that we are truly confident that Misha knew that she was cared for, treasured, and, above all, loved during her time with us. To say that we feel it is a privilege to have known Misha, even for a short time, is an understatement. It is one of the greatest honors we’ve had, and a time that will undoubtedly stay with each of us forever. We will never stop loving this amazing little cub, and though she can no longer be with us, she will always be in our hearts and a part of the IEAS family.