La Hacienda Greenhouse announced a death in the family this week.

Jericho the camel died Feb. 12.

“It is with heavy hearts that we announce our beloved friend and companion, Jericho the camel, reached the end of his long journey from the east,” a representative posted on the La Hacienda Facebook page. “This day he sees for himself the Christ Child.”

The camel was born June 26, 2000, in Phillipsburg. He came to live at La Hacienda, owned by David and Diana Spielman, five weeks later.

Later that year, he was the main attraction of Central Christian Church’s live Nativity.

He also participated in nativity scenes from Wichita to Blackwell, Oklahoma.

“Jericho brought peace and comfort to many people who came to visit over the years,” the Facebook post states.

“He loved all children, but was especially good with the mentally challenged kids and would often cry real tears when they would leave.”

Jericho touched the lives of many in his 17 years, as was apparent through the loving comments left in his memory.

“Thanks for shar(ing) Jericho with so many over the years,” said Karen Bauer.

“We send you love and hugs at this sad time, and may wonderful memories warm your hearts.”

“What a beautiful soul Jericho was. You couldn’t have met him and not known he was special,” said Sharon Shelton.

“So sorry for the Spielman family. My condolences for your loss.”

Jericho often spent his time showing off by carrying big logs around the property, playing basketball and drinking Gatorade from a bottle.

“He loved his red apples,” the post said. “​His family will miss his big brown eyes and the ‘Hello’ grumble that greeted them each day.

“His extended family, which includes everyone who stopped by and brought friends, family, and even folks from across the sea, will miss seeing him.”

​The Spielman family requests that individuals who wish to give back simply donate to an animal rescue, shelter or foster program.

La Hacienda Greenhouse is located at 1821 N. 15th St. in northwest Arkansas City.