May 1, 2001 - May 4, 2016
Loving Adoptive Parents: Christopher, Kathleen and Donovan Ray of Dallas, TX
From Heidi Krahn, Executive Director and Founder
In the past two weeks it as though I have been carrying the weight of the world around on my shoulders. I know that you know things are not the same. Losing your lifelong mate Kate has been difficult, but there is more. You have been feeling weaker every day. Food does not taste the same. Some days you can hardly get out of bed. The worst part is that your boo-boos are growing really fast. I see it in your eyes… but I don’t want to spend one sad moment with you. I have wasted so many days living in dread of death that I missed the beautiful days that could have been spent with others who have passed.
Your CAREgivers and I decided to give you the most fantastical birthday ever. What a special day it was. You didn’t know it was going to be your last and I tried to pretend I didn’t know. I made the decision to surround you with all the magical things that made your life perfect…the things that makes CARE so perfect!
Snuffels, toys, turkey cake and most importantly all the love any tiger could want or need. You see it isn’t often we CAREgivers know that it would be a last birthday. In a way we all received a gift on your birthday. You laid by the fence for hours while we all kissed and loved you. You were so strong that day. It was a perfect day. You reminded us all of your strong younger days before cancer began destroying your incredible body.
I don’t know if people understand how heartbreaking it is to say goodbye. I was there they day you were born. You took my breath away that day and continue to do it now even if it is only in my memory of you. You have blessed so many people with your magnificence and beauty. CARE and the world has lost a puzzle piece.
I would like to share your gift to me to others. I wish that every person would treat the ones that they love with joy and happiness every day. Don’t ever waste a day mourning loss before the loss. Live every day to its fullest…don’t waste a day, hour, or minute… celebrate every birthday like it’s your last. This is how you changed my life sweet Rascal.
It is time for me to do what I do best now…care for all the others I am still entrusted with the stewardship of. I will think of you often and smile because I know for certain.......YOU KNOW HOW MUCH YOU WERE LOVED!
Rascal is a handsome white tiger who lives in a large enclosure with Lil Kate and Donya. He is a very laid-back male, and as a result, Donya has taken the dominant role in the enclosure. This is an unusual set-up, since normally the male is the dominant cat. Rascal prefers to let the females eat first, and he steps back when things get tense to prevent fights from arising. He can often be seen perched on top of their large wooden platform keeping watch over the facility. He likes to play with the large ball in his enclosure. Rascal loves attention and always gets up to see what is going on when new visitors come to his fence.