I have the sad task today to inform you that Simba, King of Pride Rock, passed away on Easter Monday, April 21, 2014, at around 5am local time at Central Campus of the Serengeti County Regional Medical Center, surrounded by his family, including his mate, Queen Nala, his daughter Kiara, her mate Kovu, his other 14 children and a good number of his 37 grandchildren.
Simba was taken to the foot of Pride Rock shortly after his passing to await the sunset. At that time, he was taken to the center of The Pridelands where his farewell ceremony took place. Then, as is the tradition, he was left to return to the ground from which he came. In this way he would remain part of The Pridelands forever, becoming the grass that would feed the antelope and wildebeest. They would in turn become food for his pride. In this way, his earthly remains would forever nourish his home.
His spirit is with his father Mufasa now. In a way, this is where he longed to be as his time with his dad was cut so short by the evil that enveloped our home.
Earlier today, the lions of Simba's Pride gathered with the other animals as Tanabi, son of Kovu and Kiara, Simba's grandson, climbed Pride Rock and claimed his rightful place as the next king. Simba had chosen him as successor as both Kovu and Kiara are themselves advanced in age. By Tanabi's side was his mate, our new queen, Nyama, who is expecting her first cubs.
King Tanabi's roar was answered by the roars of the other lions and the cheers of the other animals. Thus, the Circle of Life continues to turn, like a kaleidoscope. People come and then go, but the ground and the sky, the winds and the sun, the moon and the stars remain. We will all be fine.
Simba's time here was a very tumultuous time for all of us. Aeihu brought the purgement during our days, allowing the evil to lay waste to our land as a way of purifying it. This 500-year event was neccessary but very painful for us to endure. Simba lost his father during these times, but had a measure of peace in the back half of his life, having many children, grandchildren and good hunting times, as no drought plaged The Pridelands during the years after his return.
The future will be interesting. Tanabi became a morph at age 5, which means his lifespan will approach 270 years. He is also aware of the workings of the outside world and is anxious for The Pridelands to become more connected with it. He is, however, very aware of the damage that the wrong kind of contact can cause. Our home is a very special place, a "Brigadoon" that could be damaged by certain aspects of the modern world. I will guide him as he approaches the outside world, as I am part of both The Pridelands and the outside world. He will also have help from The Emperor, who wishes to meet him soon. The Pridelands are a jewel of Africa and many people, not only in Africa, but around the world, know about our special place.
On behalf of our family and our pride, I would like to express our sincere gratitude for all of the MILLIONS (yes I mean that literally) of prayers and well-wishes that have been bestowed upon us. Keep us in your thoughts and prayers as we mourn King Simba's passing and transition into the future.