University of Texas at Austin mascot BEVO XIV has died.
The Longhorn steer was diagnosed with bovine leukemia virus last week, after falling ill ahead of the annual Red River Rivalry against University of Oklahoma earlier this month. He officially retired earlier this week.
BEVO XIV died in his sleep, surrounded by his owners and caretakers John T. and Betty Baker, according to a statement from UT-Austin.
"BEVO XIV was so much more than a traditional mascot—he was so big and strong, but he had such a sweet personality and a gentle soul," said Ricky Brennes, executive director of the Silver Spurs Alumni Association, which pays for the Longhorns' mascot's care. "He loved the attention that came with being BEVO but was very cool, calm and smart. Like a dog he would come when called by name, show up to the house looking for treats and even roll over on his side so Mrs. Baker could rub his belly. He did so much for his university and community. His last few days provided great memories, but we miss him already."
The Silver Spurs has already begun the search for the next BEVO.