Losing a pet is never easy — but one heartbroken cat owner recently discovered that he was not alone in mourning the death of his beloved animal companion.
Turns out, the friendly feline had touched a stranger's heart as well.
Last month, Scott Ewels was saddened to discover the body of his cat, named Bear, who had died not far from home after an apparent vehicle strike.
Bear, along with his brother, Teddy, had been an adventurous cat. Together, they could often be seen slinking through the cat-door, preferring to spend their time outdoors. What Ewels didn't know at the time, however, was that Bear and Teddy had made a new friend while out on their frequent adventures.
But with Bear's passing, that person wouldn't be a stranger to the cat's owner much longer.
Two weeks after Bear's death, Ewels was surprised to find Teddy strolling into the house with a note attached to his collar.
"Dear Owner: I'm your neighbour, living in 4. I'm also your cats' close friends as they (2 cats) are used to coming to my room everyday," it read. "But one of them, a bigger one has disappeared for two weeks. Is he OK? I'm so worried about him. He is so lovely cat and always touched my heart. Wish he is fine."
Ewels, who was still in mourning, was moved to learn that the person who lives behind him loved Bear as much as he did.
"I wrote a note back to number 4, and posted it straight away, even as it was late in the evening," Ewels told The Dodo. "I mentioned that Bear had passed away, and was so glad that he had brought joy to their lives too. I included my email address, and she has since emailed us with pictures of Bear (and Teddy) in her house, and stories of their adventures with her."
As it turns out, Bear had helped fill a void in that stranger's life.
"He really made an impression with our neighbor," said Ewels. "She rehearsed her university thesis to him and she had no one else to talk to. It makes his death even more poignant."
Though it's heartbreaking that Bear's life ended too soon, there's bittersweet beauty in knowing that his final act was bringing together two people who might otherwise have remained strangers forever. Their first meeting will be to say goodbye to the cat they both love, said Ewels:
"She is now coming over tomorrow to visit Bear's grave."