It was an icy cold morning and the sun had yet to rise when Brad Slater, flashlight in hand, began the train inspection.
The locomotive had stopped in Wainwright, Alberta, on Sunday morning. And Slater, a conductor at the Canadian National Railway, shivered in the minus-40-degree blight, as he weaved between the tracks.
The sound coming from beneath one of the frozen engines was the kind no one ever wanted to hear: a sad, pained cry.
At first, Slater thought the train had hit someone. But when he raised his flashlight to one of the train's frozen engines, he caught a glimpse of fur.
It was a cat.