Cheetah, the chimpanzee from the “Tarzan” films of the 1930s, has died at the age of 80, reports the Florida sanctuary where he lived.
“It is with great sadness that the community has lost a dear friend and family member on December 24, 2011,” the Suncoast Primate Sanctuary in Palm Harbor, announced on its website.
Cheetah performed in “Tarzan the Ape Man” (1932) and “Tarzan and His Mate” (1934), films about a man reared in the jungle starring Johnny Weissmuller and Maureen O’Sullivan.
The average life span of a wild chimpanzee is around 45 years.
Cheetah arrived at the sanctuary in 1960 — loved finger-painting and watching football, and found Christian music soothing, said the sanctuary’s outreach director Debbie Cobb told the Tampa Tribune.
Cheetah was very in tune to human feelings,” Cobb was quoted as saying.
Cheetah stood out because he walked upright with a straight back like a human, and had other distinguished by other talents.
“If he didn’t like somebody or something that was going on, he would pick up some poop and fling it. He could hit you at 30 feet.
Thanks for the memories Cheetah.