Never under estimate the power of a cat. I’m not talking about the brute strength of the big cats, like a lion or tiger, although that should never be under estimated either. I’m referring to love and courage that can empower others. A good example is the true story of a feline called Simon. He was an abandoned cat in Hong Kong, found by a British sailor who sneaked him aboard the ship, the HMS Amethyst in 1948. He took it upon himself to fight the rats that invaded the food stores and soon endeared himself to the entire crew. He is the only cat to have received the Dickin Medal, the equivalent of the Victoria Cross for animals. According to Commander Hett, “During a terrifying time, he helped boost the morale of many young sailors, some of whom had seen their friends killed.” Read the full article at the BBC website.
To this day Simon’s tale lives on. Paul Gallico who is probably best known for his work, The Poseidon Adventure, had written the book, Jenny, published in 1950, and dedicated it to, “the late Simon of the Amethyst.” Lynn Barrett-Lee wrote a fictionalized account, Able Seacat Simon: The Wartime Hero of the High Seas in 2016. Also in 2016 Jacky Donovan wrote Simon Ships Out and a children’s version, Seacat Simon. Marcus Sterne wrote Simon the Sea Cat in 2018. There could be more out there about this very popular and ‘able’ cat.