In Loving Memory of Dame Daphne Sheldrick

04 June 1934 - 12 April 2018

“Daphne was a national treasure and a conservation icon. Her legacy is immeasurable and her passing will reverberate far and wide because the difference she has made for conservation in Kenya is unparalleled.”– Angela Sheldrick, Daphne Sheldrick’s Daughter and CEO of the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust.

In her 83 years with us, Daphne touched countless lives — from generations of elephants who are thriving today through her trailblazing conservation work, to people all over the world who drew inspiration from her. She is testament to the difference that a single person can make, and her legacy lives on as we continue to protect and preserve wildlife in her memory.

Below, we invite you to share your own story of how Daphne touched your life.

Write a condolence Message

Andra Bosiljevac

Posted 7 November 2018

Daphne Sheldrick was a unique mix of compassion and toughness. For her to keep caring and keep trying, to keep seeing sweet babies die who had nothing good to eat, was remarkable and something only God could get her through time and again without making her hard and numb to the orphans.
And yet, even then, no one could have known how critical the elephant orphanage would become as the poaching crisis exploded years later.
Yes, Daphne was used. God chose her, prepped her and used her. This I’m sure she recognized and threw herself whole-heartedly into each day. The effects of all her work are incalculable world-wide as elephants are rescued and raised to adulthood since the elusive baby elephant formula that she finally discovered was made known.
What a rich impact she had on Africa and beyond! Her example, her ideas and involvement are a beacon to animal rescues at every level and her name is synonymous with integrity, effectiveness and love, and the greatest of these was love.

David R.

Posted 5 November 2018

When I learned of her passing I had a big knot in my stomach. This woman educated me about not only elephants and the importance of conservation, but about compassion and what difference one human being who truly cares can make.

This woman will be sorely missed and I will NEVER forget the lessons she taught me through her work with elephants. May her spirit rest and the world is a better place because she was in it. People like this dont come around all that often , but when they do they change everything . Not only through their direct action, but through the inspiration they give others to act as well. My heart still hurts, sucha wonderful lady. Rest in peace and may you be guided to everlasting life.


Posted 27 October 2018

Daphne Sheldrick had a love of wildlife & dedicated her life & work to these wonderful elephants .she set an example which we should all follow..her devotion & compassion will live on for many generations to in peace wonderful lady.❤️


Posted 27 October 2018

Dear wonderful people
I’ve just shed a tear as I’ve only just heard of your mums passing. Sorry for your huge loss, sorry so late. She was amazing, I used to pretend to be her and just hang out with one of my favourite things in the world. I went to Krueger Park in 2000 and wished I could have just somehow stayed in this great country. 18 years later and I love my life, (though too many humans in it) and still just wish I had made a difference. I have been shipping artwork now for 26 years and I’m so glad the ban on shipping IVORY has finally taken place. I could never deal with certain clients as it just sickens me. Some say it won’t make a difference but I think it will, if the next generation find it a headache to ship then it’s a small start. They are hopefully now just buying more modern crap. (Ok some is ok) I know there’s the black market, goodness what you guys must have witnessed it’s so frightening. Please keep doing what your doing, stay safe and if you ever need a mad bird to help you guys in anyway it would be my pleasure. The love of my life is off going around Europe in a van and who can blame him man. He just wanted peace and quiet, he’s given me the confidence to realise life is too short follow your dreams. Like your mum what a wonderful bunch you are x

Janene Freitag

Posted 24 October 2018

I watched many videos of her telling how she went through the different formulas for the baby ellie’s to get just the right mix. I loved just listening to her speak about the elephants because there was so much love for them. Ever since learning of her work I have dreamed of visiting the foundation and learning more. My granddaughter is named Ellie and we’ve talked about adopting an elephant after I told her they call baby elephants ellie’s. In honor or Dame Daphne Shedrick we will be doing it the next time we’re together! My sincerest condolences! My heart is broken! Our world just got a little blue and heaven just got a little brighter!

Tom Elder

Posted 22 October 2018

Amazing person for an amazing course.

Best wishes to the family

Melanie Sebelin

Posted 21 October 2018

I have never met her, yet she touched me through her book and the films I have seen her in. What a remarkable person. I feel very sad she is not in this world anymore, but am grateful she has been.

Jacquie Thomas

Posted 20 October 2018

Daphne you have been an inspiration and thank you so much for your tireless dedication to conservation in Kenya. I have watched your wonderful diaries through media. You will be sadly missed but so happy you have left your legacy and your daughter will carry on your fabulous, dedicated work. Xx

Michaela Newnham

Posted 16 October 2018

An African Love Story, my introduction to Daphne and David and the wonderful things they achieved for wildlife and for Kenya, was such an amazing tale, truly inspirational. I am full of admiration for Daphne. The world will be an emptier place without her, but I know there are hundreds of people determined to carry on her wonderful legacy. And this Christmas, all my friends and family will be making donations to the Trust instead of receiving presents!

Derek & Elizabeth Sheehan

Posted 13 October 2018

No words could be sufficient to praise the remarkable life’s work of Daphne.

Well done thou good and faithful servant, may your work continue forever

Simon Nicklin

Posted 5 October 2018

I was deeply saddened to hear of Dame Doctor Daphne Sheldrick’s death. I have followed her and her late husband’s story for many years. I first heard of the work they both did and the Elephant orphanage on a film, which I watched whilst working and staying out in Nairobi.
I was fortunate, to visit the Elephant and Rhino Orphanage during one of my many work trips out to Nairobi. It was something I will never forget.
The world is far better for people like Dame Daphne and her late husband, David and their family who are ensuring this work is carried on.

Debbie Ney

Posted 2 October 2018

Dame Daphne was an inspiration. Her love for animals and nature led her to do something extraordinary. Her book touched my heart. I am so sorry she is gone.


Posted 27 September 2018

Thank you for living, for inspiring, for teaching, for fighting, for leaving a legacy !

Ann smith

Posted 21 September 2018

I was so upset at the passing of dame sheldrick I wrote to her an she always wrote back to me she will always b in the hearts of people all around the world an now her family have taken over where she left of u are a angel in disguise Daphne’s u change my life an the way all animals should be protected my love an thoughts to every one who she had touched an most of all to her lovley family an all the workers who work to help the animals an behind the seans god bless Ann an Mark smith xx

Joan H.

Posted 19 September 2018

My condolences to the family! I think I can speak for many when I say, Daphne’s life work, her spirit, the difference she has made for these wonderful creatures, the elephants and other wildlife, is something we all wish we could aspire to. God bless Daphne, and God bless and protect the elephants.

patricia j piotter

Posted 17 September 2018

to the family of dame daphne,

how blessed you all were to have her in your lives. how blessed was the world to have her in it.

what a beautiful soul, she must have been an incredible inspiration to everyone she met. i am sure that you must miss her terribly i wish that could have had the honor of knowing her.

many thanks to you her family for carrying on her legacy.

patricia piotter

Desly Movius

Posted 13 September 2018

I have just finished reading Daphne Sheldrick’s beautiful memoir, “Love, Life, and Elephants: An African Love Story.” If you have not read it already, you must get a copy and start it today. If you have read it already, you should read it again. You will never forget this amazing woman. In a troubled world that brings us depressing news each and every day, Daphne’s life shows us all that some things remain uppermost in importance. Her great legacy should remind us that we must never forget to speak out for our fellow creatures on this little planet who have no voice. Safari njema, Daphne.

Patricia James

Posted 6 September 2018

With deepest condolences on the sad loss of the wonderful Dame Daphne Sheldrick.

Without the wonderful work of both yourself and your late husband, these beautiful, majestic, gentle giants would not of had a chance.

May you work continue forever, I admired you both for the wonderful work you have done at giving these babies a second chance.

John Kamau

Posted 5 September 2018

Though the passing over of our “Godmother” was untimely and sad, it has reminded us how much the power of one person can change the world. This week we saw the news of over 90 elephants killed in Botswana, this was based on the power of one greedy person, on the other hand, our mother have single handedly saved thousands of elephants, and every single day we see her beautiful life in them.

In reality, she will never die, as long as one of those elephants remain alive and standing, she will never ever die. Her work has also motivated me to join the fight, and dedicate the remaining part of my life to fighting and protecting elephants and rhinos, so everyday when its dark, when the news is all about death and poaching, I think about her, I look at what she achieved.

I therefore join you to celebrate her life with the knowledge that mama will never die.

With many thanks and love.

John Kamau


Posted 25 August 2018

Thank you to an incredible lady who has treated us with a firework of goodness protecting wildlife all through her life. We need more people like Daphne on this planet, and we should all do our small part to help, as well as educate all children at school all over the world from the youngest age to respect and realise how fortunate we are to share our planet earth with magnificent wild species such as elephants, rhinos, and all others small or large.