The P-22 mountain lion is to be commemorated at a memorial walk in Griffith Park on Sunday

LOS ANGELES (KABC) — A sunset memorial hike was planned in Griffith Park on Sunday to celebrate the life of P-22, the legendary mountain lion of Los Angeles who was euthanized on Saturday from serious injuries sustained in a probable car crash.

The local community was invited to participate in the hike, which City Councilwoman Nithya Raman’s office said was scheduled to begin at 4:00 p.m. at the Charlie Turner Trailhead, 2840 W. Observatory Road.

The cougar, who became the face of an international effort to save California’s endangered mountain lion population, was widely mourned after news of his death, days after he was found trapped and injured, severely underweight and suffering from others in a Los Feliz backyard Discomfort.

“RIP P-22,” community organizer Christian La Mont tweeted on Saturday. “He wasn’t just a big cat. He was a symbol of resistance. Opposition to the idea that LA has no wildlife, to development in its own backyard, to SoCal’s dwindling number of mountain lions. He lived his 9 cat lives the fullest & conquered our hearts.”

California Department of Fish and Wildlife officials announced Saturday morning that P-22 was “compassionately euthanized” after a full medical evaluation revealed he had “multiple serious injuries and chronic health issues.”

“This really hurts,” Fish and Wildlife director Chuck Bonham said, fighting back tears. “It’s been an incredibly difficult few days, and for myself, I’ve felt the full weight of the city of Los Angeles on my shoulders.”

Bonham said that after consulting with several veterinary experts, the decision was made to humanely euthanize the animal at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, where it was being treated, to spare it further suffering.

The lion, one of many Southland territory cats being pursued by National Park Service researchers, has gained local notoriety for its tenacity and resilience. He successfully managed to cross both the 405 and 101 freeways to reach his recent hiking area in the Griffith Park area.

“P-22’s advanced age, combined with chronic, debilitating, life-limiting conditions and a clear need for extensive long-term veterinary intervention, left P-22 with no hope of a positive outcome,” the CDFW said in a statement.

Copyright © 2022 KABC Television, LLC. All rights reserved. The P-22 mountain lion is to be commemorated at a memorial walk in Griffith Park on Sunday

Laura Coffey

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