Celebrating the Life of O’Malley
This week we lost one of the biggest characters in cat form that we have had here at Spring Farm CARES. O’Malley was larger than life and one of a kind. He had many nicknames over the years but most prominent was Mr. O’Malley or Professor O’Malley. He just had that sort of persona that deserved a title of respect.
O’Malley came to the farm when he was found as a stray in very poor condition. He hardly had any hair and was covered in open sores. It turned out that O’Malley was FIV positive and that autoimmune disease was causing or contributing to his skin condition. It took months and months of medications and daily baths to finally get him through it. Now this illustrates just how unique O’Malley was because he LOVED his baths. We had never seen a cat like baths as much as he did.
O’Malley’s trademark was his incredible purr and his incessant drooling when he was happy. He loved to be held and carried around and cuddled. And whoever did so, was sure to be soaked from his drool. He also loved to be dressed up in outfits. This all started when we had to put little shirts on him to protect his skin and keep him from licking himself. But out of that grew a whole line of customized O’Malley wardrobe. He even had some with his name embroidered on them.
O’Malley was as easy going as could be. He was an ambassador for peace and love. His energy was deeply appreciated and anyone who spent time with him ended up with the therapeutic benefits of being loved by him. He was an old soul in a cat body. And he was so loved.
One of the greatest things we witnessed through all the years that O’Malley shared with us, is how he made people feel. O’Malley had the greatest ability to connect deeply and embed himself deep within the hearts of those who chose to connect with him that way. And he had a way of letting each of them know that they were his absolute favorite person. Writing this from a Director’s chair, I can tell you that there are several people out there who know for sure that they were O’Malley’s cherished friend. His favorite. And he meant it! He was not just saying that. This was the very special gift that O’Malley had. It came from his soul, through his heart, and into the hearts of those he loved. This included veterinarians, caretakers, volunteers, and even visitors. To have felt this myself and watched him do this with others was something I have cherished about him. He had a magical way of making you feel incredibly special. And it was genuine.
In the end, his heart and lungs gave out to the disease he had kept at bay for so long. His body could no longer continue and it was time to help ease his transition. As we sat with him in those final moments, O’Malley continued to radiate that peace and love and compassion. It’s been an honor Mr. O’Malley! We say good-bye with tears but with profound gratitude for all that you brought to so many hearts.