One of the most striking stories of a cat's courage came from Brooklyn, New York City, in 1996. On 29 March that year, in the area known as East New York, an auto-dealer's abandoned premises caught fire. Fire engines were soon on the scene and the blaze was almost extinguished when Fireman David Gianelli heard faint mewing coming from near the ruined building. He found there, huddled together, two 4-week-old kittens; and three others were found just across the street. Their mother, who had been badly burned, lay nearby. She had rescued her brood from the burning building and, as she could carry only one kitten out at a time, must have made five separate journeys into the thick, choking smoke and blistering heat in order to do so. Her devotion, courage and persistence are almost unbelievable.

She beat lymphoma but kidney disease and other ailments wore her down. RIP brave and beautiful Scarlett.