(Editor’s note: This letter was received from Betty Patridge, Wessington, and LaMirada, Calif. She was responding to a RAMifications, “Highpoints,” about providing obituary information ahead of time. She wrote, “It is silly, but I have to write an obituary about our cat—he was such a special cat and I hope you don’t mind if I write about Pretty Boy.” She wrote from the heart…we don’t mind.)
Pretty Boy came to our farm in South Dakota in the fall of 2000. He was out by the old barn, and I called “kitty, kitty,” and he came running. I found some scraps and he was really hungry. We let him sleep in the garage because it started to rain. He wanted in the house, but we said no. I knew he must belong to someone because he was so friendly. So I put a note at the Wessington post office and called about what to do (moving to California for the winter). Our daughter in California said, “Why don’t you just bring him with you, he’ll be okay.”
I asked, “What am I going to do with a cat in town?” Max wasn’t too crazy about it, but we were hauling an enclosed trailer back, so we ended up putting him in that.
Pretty Boy adapted to city life and won our hearts. He became the best house cat and outdoor cat, too. He followed me around the house and yard; loved to be brushed. He had to sleep in the garage at night, and in the morning wouldn’t come into the house until he had a good brushing, and when I vacuumed he wanted to be vacuumed also. He was so good to our great-grandkids, and would lay wherever they were playing, and would go out to the sidewalk and greet friends walking, and go visit neighbors.
He rode to South Dakota and back to California two times each year since 2001, and went to Texas with us two times, so he traveled lots of miles. He liked to ride on that seat between Max and me. I put a towel down on it, and he’d just sleep away. We had a litter box behind the seat and his kennel in the backseat. When we’d stop, I had a little doggie leash to put on him. He loved to ride in any vehicle.
It seemed as though he got to understand what you say, and I guess you can say he adopted us.
Sunday, Jan. 6, 2013, he did not get out of the way. I thought he was in the garage and he came out while we were backing away, and got his back leg. I guess he must have been worse than we thought. We took him for X-rays and were on our way to a vet hospital, and he died.
Max and I of course blame ourselves—should have done this or done that—but it is too late now.
I think Pretty Boy was about a year old when he came to the barn that fall of 2000, so he was 13 or so. He brought a lot of pleasure to us. Max was not a cat lover, but Pretty Boy won him over, and we are both lost without him.
We are bringing his ashes back to South Dakota, and burying them in the tree strip behind our house, where he loved to walk and scratch the trees.
We lost a son, Brad, 21 years ago, and now Brad has Pretty Boy to take care of for us, until we meet again.
You were a special cat, Pretty Boy, and we loved you!