Last week, a macaque named Roxanne died at the age of 36. Macaques in captivity have a normal life span of 25 years, and as the oldest animal of the over 800 living at the Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch, Roxanne was a very special primate.

Retired in 1995 from biomedical research after being used in dental and hearing studies, Roxanne spent the last 24 years living sanctuary life at Black Beauty. When she arrived, she had severe muscle atrophy and could barely climb but she quickly recovered her mobility due to the enrichment and proper care she was given by the expert staff at Black Beauty. There are 17 primates living at the sanctuary, six of whom were also used in medical research. 

According to Noelle Almrud, director of the Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch operated by the Fund for Animals, an affiliate of the Humane Society of the United States, “Roxanne was the very definition of sanctuary. She lived every day exactly how she wanted to, happy that her troubles were over, and she was home. She loved sunbathing, foraging for acorns, and loved peanut butter sandwiches. Roxanne lived with many macaques here, but her strongest relationship was with another primate named Minnie. They would groom every morning and Minnie dutifully cared for Roxanne in her later years. Roxanne amazed us every day. With her sassy attitude and mischievous spirit, we were sure she would outlive us all.”   

Kathleen Conlee, vice president of animal research issues for the Humane Society of the United States added, “Roxanne will forever be an ambassador to animals still being used in research. It is our duty to share her story and celebrate the life she lived in sanctuary free from suffering at the hands of humans. We celebrate all of the residents at Black Beauty who can now live peacefully and never be hurt again.”

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Photos of Roxanne.

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