Jack, an amber-eyed cat lost at JFK for 61 days, captured the hearts of thousands of cat lovers who rallied in support to find him. His 26,000+ Facebook fans cheered when he was found on Oct 25 but the mood turned somber when the vet gave 50/50 odds of him surviving his extensive injuries. Sadly, Jack died Sunday, Nov.6.
Like many of my fellow cat lovers, I followed every update but felt an ominous feeling weeks ago. As an intuitive, I prefer to lean towards the positive. I felt his energy early on, sensed he was alive but weeks later while everyone still felt hope, I didn’t, and couldn’t say it wasn’t going to be happy ending. It may not be the ending we all wanted but it was Jack’s ending and a heroic one at that. He galvanized thousands of people; some who rescued and found homes for other JFK homeless cats. Jack’s legacy will live on perhaps in new policies for pet travel in the airlines industry, and in the hearts of countless new cat lovers. Cat lovers have the biggest hearts and I believe good things will come from this tragedy.
Jack is at peace now. My thoughts and prayers go to Jack’s family and friends.
This is the complete announcement from Mary Beth Melchior, Karen Pascoe’s sister, posted on Jack the Cat’s Facebook page on Nov. 6.
“Dear Friends of Jack:
It is with tears that I must tell you that Jack has gone over the rainbow bridge.
He was with Karen yesterday, and his condition was worsening. He was treated overnight, and she (and I) both had extensive conversations with the vets at Blue Pearl regarding his condition. Jack had extensive wounds on the back of his body, and the wounds were unable to heal because his skin had deteriorated due to the malnutrition that occurred while he was lost. Despite antibiotics, the infections were worsening, and his skin was continuing to deteriorate. He needed surgery to treat the wounds, but there was not enough available skin to close the wounds after the surgery. The vet compared his skin condition to having severe burns over 50-60% of his body. The vet was very clear that she had conferred with every possible doctor regarding options for Jack, but none of them left him with a substantial chance of survival and all of them involved him suffering.
Jack had been through so much, and the last thing anyone wanted was for him to suffer more. Jack was bathed in love and crossed over just a few minutes ago.
We thank everyone who has gone on this journey with us. We have been introduced to people we have come to not only respect, but love. We will continue our work on this page… and will also be starting a dedicated website in Jack’s honor. We want people to understand the risks that attend putting an animal in cargo, and we hope to spur change in the industry so that no one else ever has to go through this again. We honor Jack, we honor all the other animals who have been killed, injured, or lost while being transported through cargo procedures, and we honor all of you who have taken the time to share your kindness and love with us.
Finally, we ask that if you are from the media and want to do a follow-up on this story, please contact Joanne Lynch with Blue Pearl at 815-549-7688. She will coordinate all your calls and help you get in touch with Karen. PLEASE do not call Karen or Mary Beth directly.
Thanks to all of you for your love & kindness. We still have 2 cats to transport… and a message to send to all the airlines and the government that is time to make sure all of our pets are safe when they travel. I’ll be back on this page tomorrow… blessings to all!! RIP, Jack… we’ll all see you soon.”