Elephants are social animals who form strong family bonds and carry a deep sense of community, notes The Dodo.
Nonetheless, one at Japan's Inokashira Park Zoo was reportedly kept all alone in a small, concrete confine for decades.
While images of the animal, Hanako, taken last year raised awareness of the dismal existence being imposed upon her, any help that may have resulted didn't come in time.
Early on Thursday, she was found lying on the floor of her enclosure. A few hours later, Hanako was confirmed dead, reports The Japan Times.
According to The Dodo, the 69-year-old elephant had spent the last 6 decades locked up in an area with no greenery.
Hanako's cause of death is not known, but a necropsy is planned.
Related: Also take a look back at our World Elephant Day coverage: