'Troopers' travel from Europe to meet Trooper the cat
Disabled cat is an inspiration
Two fans of Trooper the cat — who survived being frozen to a driveway in Stephenville Crossing for 24 hours in 2012 — are visiting Newfoundland and Labrador from overseas to visit the now-famous feline.
June Wishart of Scotland and Monika Mattson of Sweden arrived in St. John's Tuesday to meet the cat they call an inspiration.
The animal became an internet celebrity when supporters, like Mattson and Wishart, joined a Facebook group and started making donations to help pay for its recovery.
"We could not believe the tragedy of the cat who was frozen to the ground. How could anyone leave him like that?" Wishart said.
"So we all gathered together, the group was started, Troopers for Trooper, and thousands of people all over the world — Australia, Canada, Sweden, Denmark, Scotland — all gathered together and contributed for his well-being."
Trooper was brought to the Atlantic Veterinary College in Charlottetown, P.E.I. to receive treatment, including the amputation of one of its hind legs and its tail, along with surgery to repair a broken pelvis.
Mattson said helping Trooper through online donations resulted in her making some good friends.
"We had auctions for the benefit of Trooper and we were bidding on things and … we had fun in the auctions," Mattson said.
He was a survivor, and everyone loves a survivor.- June Wishart
"It feels great [to have helped] because I work at the cat shelter at home. So it feels great to kind of help at home and help abroad."
Wishart said they will meet Trooper on Oct. 8, but will be visiting with online friends until then.
"We're going to plan and go and see Trooper, but before that we're going to see other Facebook friends that we've made since we've known Trooper. We're like a big family," she said.
"There was always something special about Trooper. He was a survivor, and everyone loves a survivor."