The Sacramento Zoo announced Friday that Executive Zoo Director and CEO Mary Healy has died.
Tonja Candelaria, public relations coordinator at the Zoo, said Healy suffered a cerebral aneurysm Thursday in Ecuador, as she was on her way to the Galapagos Islands. Later in the day Healy was declared brain dead and then suffered a massive heart attack, Candelaria said. Healy was 61.
Candelaria said Healy's trip was a mix of business and pleasure.
"It was a trip to see animals in the wild and learn more about the habitat," said Candelaria. "It was also the thing she loved most, being out in the field."
Healy was the president of the California Association of Zoos and Aquariums and was one of nine international council members for the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums, Candelaria said. She says last year, Healy was presented with a Women Who Mean Business award by the Sacramento Business Journal.
Candelaria said that a memorial for Healy will be held at a later date. She said Healy's family has asked that no flowers be sent but donations in her memory can be made to the Sacramento Zoological Society.