The last male northern white rhino

If the last male northern white rhino dies, it may mean extinction for his species.

With news that Sudan is gravely ill and may face euthanasia where he is being guarded in Kenya, it seemed like a good time to remember him and those who kept him safe all these years.

Sudan, one of three remaining northern white rhinos in the entire world, has been closely guarded at Kenya’s Ol Pejeta Conservancy since 2009, along with two female rhinos.

Photos over the years show the affection shown by his keepers and armed guards who take care of these magnificent creatures.

(Sudan, a northern white rhinoceros, is protected by armed guards John Mugo and Daniel Maina at Ol Pejeta Conservancy on June 25, 2015, in Laikipia County, Kenya – Gettyimages)