Sam by David, Anita & D.J. Phillips / Mommy

Our Sam came to us as a kitten who was rescued from a State Correctional Facility. The inmates were not allowed to have cats so “Killer” as he was called by them, was kicked outside by the prison guards to fend for himself at only six weeks of age. My husband worked at the prison in an area called Center Gate and he became quite fond of this little black cat.

We had just lost our twenty year old Siamese cat, Abbey to kidney failure a month before and we were devastated. We decided that we would go and get “Killer” and bring him home to live with us and our other Siamese, Eleanor and Black Lab, Shadow. Oh, he was no “Killer”. He was the kindest, gentlest little guy you’d ever want to know. My uncle, whose name was Sam used to die his hair black and that’s what this little guy’s fur looked like to me….so very, very black and shiny. We named him Sam. I would have to say that as hardened as those inmates were in this maximum security facility, they treated Sam very well. He was already litter trained….how did that happen? The prison always kept some cats in the Commissary for “mouse patrol”, so the inmates stole kitty litter and put it in a shoebox for him. They could have stolen cat food for him, but no…not for “Killer”….they stole tuna! Sam loved his tuna and tuna “juice”!

I should also note that our Sam was quite the “escape artist”. Did the inmates teach him that trick, too?? He escaped out the sliding glass door of our home twice. He was running with a bunch of feline thugs. He was quickly caught with the help of a little raw meat.

He loved his raw, red meat which he got only on very special occasions. Too much of a good thing can be bad. A month after getting Sam, Eleanor, age 19 passed away. So, now it was just Sam and Shadow – both black. They became fast friends – eating together, playing together and sleeping together. Sam would often curl up between Shadow’s big paws and fall asleep.

Seven years ago, Shadow developed bone cancer and was put to sleep. Sam mourned as all animals do. Three months later, a check of the SPCA’s website brought us to another black cat – Molly, age nine months. We had to have her. Sam was once again a happy little guy.

On Wednesday, April 18, 2007, at the age of 16 years, we were told by our vet that our little guy, Sam had stomach cancer…he never weighed more than ten or eleven pounds. Now he only weighed seven pounds. It was eating him alive. No, not for our Sam. No suffering! So, after the gentle hands of our vet gave him a shot to make him sleepy, he turned his face to mine and gently planted two butterfly kisses on my face. That will always be my memory of this beautiful, gentle, little soul. Till we meet at the Rainbow Bridge…Godspeed, Sam! Love you much.


Mommy, Daddy, D.J. & Molly (who misses you terribly!)
David, Anita & D.J. Phillips