Kiska, ‘world’s loneliest orca whale’, died at Marineland theme park in Niagara Falls, Canada, it was announced on Friday.

Kiska was the last captive orca in Canada. The death was announced by Marineland where she was loving for the past several decades. “Marineland’s marine mammal care team and experts did everything possible to support Kiska’s comfort and will mourn her loss,” the theme park said in a statement.

Phil Demers, animal activist, who previously worked at the park, said that the orca was completely alone since 2011. She was taken to an aquarium in Iceland where she lived with four other young orcas.

She was captured in 1979 when she was three years old. Kiska was then sold to Marineland. Her former tankmate Keiko was casted in a Hollywood film ‘Free Willy’.

Kiska gave birth to five calves but all of them died at a young age. Studies have shown orcas are social mammals, and isolation like this is considered torture.

Marineland has been criticized for their treatment of animals since the 1970s. A viral video of Kiska banging her head against the glass went viral in 2021 and an investigation was conducted. Prosecutors backed out from pursuing animal cruelty charges.

“A true tragedy – Kiska was captured from the wild in 1979 and spent those 44 years since being exploited for human entertainment. At least she will no longer be suffering. To honour her, we will keep pushing for progress and won’t ever let this happen again. #RIPKiska,” a Twitter user said.

“kiska had trauma building up from being alone. saying that she would be killed regardless of any orca she would have been paired with, specifically in captivity, is a far statement,” a second one added.