Before 54-year-old Mario passed away, he had one special goodbye he needed to say to his favorite giraffe. Mario had worked as a maintenance man at the Rotterdam zoo in the Netherlands for over 25 years. As Mario's fight against terminal brain cancer came to an end, all he wanted to do was visit the zoo one last time. He wanted to say goodbye to his colleagues — and maybe share a final moment with some of his furry friend
"To say goodbye to the animals."
"To see the ocean again."
"To enjoy a delicious ice cream cone."
But what does Veldboer do for older folks who have already experienced so much? What do their wishes look like? Mostly, it's the little things they cherish, like seeing their home one last time or spending a few hours just looking at something beautiful.
Veldboer, in an interview with the BBC, describes one woman who had not been home for six months. When they brought her into her living room on a stretcher, she hoisted herself up and stayed there for hours, doing nothing but looking around — likely replaying an entire lifetime worth of memories — before quietly asking them to take her away.
"To see my favorite painting one last time."
"To watch the dolphins play."
"To attend my granddaughter's wedding."