White lion who appeared in famed Las Vegas act dies at the Cincinnati Zoo

Prosperity, a beloved white lion who lived at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden since 1998, has died.

The 22-year-old lion had “extended age-related health issues,” according to a Cincinnati Zoo Facebook post, and was euthanized Monday. The median life expectancy for the species is 16 years.

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“I am surprised by the realization of how much she captured my heart with her sweet and gentle soul,” wrote Laura Carpenter, one of the lion’s care givers, in a tribute.

Prosperity started her life in Las Vegas with Siegfried and Roy, two entertainers and magicians who used white lions and tigers in their act at the Mirage Resort and Casino.

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During the Las Vegas shows the cub was brought on stage in a limousine and fed from a silver platter.

It was determined her life would be better if she was raised with other cubs. In 1988 a private jet transported her to Cincinnati where she joined the zoo’s young males, Sunshine and Future.

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“I had my doubts about her assimilating to a lifestyle in a zoo, but she got along fine and grew to love our boys,” Carpenter wrote. “As the lions grew together they became inseparable.”

Prosperity gave birth to four cubs while at the zoo. The three male cubs went to the Toledo Zoo. Her female cub, Gracious, now 18 years old, still lives at the Cincinnati Zoo.

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“We will miss you, our most special of lions, you have been the best lion anyone could have hoped for,” Carpenter wrote. “I am most honored to have gotten to take care of you these many years.”

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