Sam, the Australian koala who became an international symbol of hope in the aftermath of the “Black Saturday” bushfires earlier this year, has died in Melbourne.
David Tree, the Country Fire Authority volunteer who was photographed giving the exhausted Sam a drink of water, agreed a vaccine needs to be found to help the animals fight the disease [Urogenital Chlamydiosis].
"It's like not worth it now, that she managed to survive the fires but die from a disease that they should be able to vaccinate her against," Mr Tree told Melbourne’s Herald Sun newspaper.
"I'm sobbing like a baby and I am a grown man. She meant so much - she highlighted the plight and vulnerability of Australian wildlife around the world.''