Harambe mascot appears at high school pep rallies, football games

Friday night lights are back and as the high school football season returns, and so has Harambe, in mascot form.

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Harambe, a 17-year-old gorilla at the Cincinnati Zoo, was killed in May after a 3-year-old child climbed into his enclosure.

Video from an Illinois school’s pep rally shows a student in a gorilla suit chasing and being chased by another dressed as a large banana.

A photo posted to Reddit Saturday indicating it is from a Cincinnati-area school shows a man in a gorilla suit mockingly fighting a child.

>>Stop making Harambe memes, Cincinnati Zoo says

"Harambe!" has become a popular exclamation among teensJean Burgess, an expert in digital culture and memes at the Queensland University of Technology, in Brisbane, Australia, told The Washington Post.

In the wake of Harambe’s death, the zoo experienced a barrage of criticism causing it to take down its social media accounts.

"Our zoo family is still healing, and the constant mention of Harambe makes moving forward more difficult for us," Thane Maynard, Cincinnati Zoo's director, recently told The Associated Press. "We are honoring Harambe by redoubling our gorilla conservation efforts and encouraging others to join us."

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