Oreo, The Model For Rocket Raccoon In ‘Guardians Of The Galaxy,’ Has Died At Age 10

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The adorable, real-life raccoon used to model the animated, machine-gun toting Rocket Raccoon in the Guardians Of The Galaxy movies has gone to the big trash can in the sky. Director James Gunn used rotoscoping with real animal models to make Rocket Raccoon (voiced by Bradley Cooper) look as realistic as possible, with the tame and friendly Mr. Oreo quickly becoming the best choice to model for Rocket. Oreo was so friendly he even accompanied Gunn to red carpet events, as seen above. And not only was he friendly and cooperative in the animating studio; just look at that cute face:

Oreo the raccoon, the real life inspiration for Rocket Raccoon

Sadly, raccoons don’t live as long as us humans (even if they sometimes seem unstoppable). Mr. Oreo has passed away Thursday at age 10. Quinta Layla announced his passing on Facebook. “Our hearts are broken as we have lost our best friend, our Guardian of our Galaxy Mr. Oreo Raccoon. Oreo passed away in the early hours of this morning after a very short illness. Many thanks to our wonderful vets for their compassion and care.”

Mr. Oreo is now being memorialized with an engraved slate marker and a sapling tree:

James Gunn has been absent from Facebook, so he hasn’t commented on Oreo’s passing, but he is still using a picture of Oreo and himself as his avatar.

Here’s a video compilation of Oreo’s first year if you want to get all choked up about it. I’m not crying; you’re crying.

Pour out a little beer — or a lot of beer — for a real one tonight.

(Via The Wrap and Oreo and Friends)