He captured our hearts, becoming a symbol of hope during the devastating bushfires that seemingly surrounded us in November last year.
In just seven days, Ellenborough Lewis - the koala so magnificently saved from a bushfire death when he was snatched up by a shirtless Toni Doherty - became a beacon; a pointer that good things do happen in the midst of crisis.
And then, cruelly, he was taken away from us.
Port Macquarie Koala Hospital clinical staff, realising the inevitable, would eventually make the heart-breaking decision to put Ellenborough Lewis to sleep for the final time.
Twelve months on, a memorial to Lewis Koala has been unveiled in Port Central.
Koala Hospital staff and volunteers attended the unveiling of the koala sculpture along with Port Central marketing manager Gia Crowhurst, Amanda Price and Belinda Gaul.
Volunteers Gaby Rivett and Barbara Barrett, who were responsible for the care of Lewis Koala - and many other burnt and injured koalas - were also there.
Mrs Rivett said the sculpture of Lewis was something positive out of an "awful tragedy".
"We were bathing his wounds, putting on ointments, bandaging his wounds and trying to make him as comfortable as possible," she said.
"The condition he was in proved too much and we had to end his suffering. On welfare grounds there was just no way he was going to survive.
"Koala Hospital volunteers were working on multiple injured koalas in need of treatment.
"We were working in teams of four with each member looking after a limb in a 15 minute timeframe.
"This treatment was performed every three days."
Mrs Rivett described the effort as "overwhelming" and sometimes difficult to comprehend.
"You really do hurt for those koalas, but you have to push that aside because you have to concentrate on helping them.
"We had to focus on each koala and do the best we could."
The Koala Hospital volunteer said the sculpture of Lewis will be a reminder of what the koala went through and the generosity of people from around the world.
"Hopefully every time you see this sculpture of Lewis we will remember this icon we have here and why we need to help them each day and tomorrow and every year.
"The generosity of the people from around the world was unbelievable. We were blown away by the success of the Gofundme page.
"This experience has changed me. I always have a soft spot for the koala but it has also hardened me as well.
"Why is this poor animal getting such a rough deal.
We have overtaken its habitat so why can't we understand that this animal needs its habitat as well. As humans, we are too selfish.Barbara Barrett
"We have overtaken its habitat but why can't we understand that this animal needs its habitat as well.
"As humans, we are too selfish," she said.
Mrs Barrett nursed Lewis at home over three nights, administering his burns and keeping him hydrated.
"His burns were just so severe," she said.
"I think this sculpture is just wonderful and it brings to mind for people how bushfires can be so devastating to koalas and our other native animals," she said.
Mrs Crowhurst said she hoped visitors to Port Central would view the sculpture of Lewis and reflect on the time since the bushfires devastated our area.
The accompanying plaque recognises Lewis's battle for survival also pointing to the over 30,000 koalas that died in the Australian bushfires with 80 per cent of their habitat destroyed.
"Already in dramatic decline, this has led them closer to being critically endangered," the plaque points out.
There is hope too.
The plaque rightly praised Toni Doherty's "heroics" but adds: This memorial to Lewis and Toni reminds us of the importance of human compassion and the role we all can play in conservation by simply stopping to lend a hand.
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