At the time of the year when the veil between this life and the next is thinnest, one very special soul has transcended the limits of this realm. It is with great sadness, that we share the news that the beloved Sir Thomas “Tommy” Trueheart passed away on the morning of November 1st, 2019. The once tortured cat was peacefully able to leave his scarred body in the arms of his doting humans. And after what he went through in his life, he deserved nothing less. You may be familiar with his story that flooded the news last year.
Sir Thomas “Tommy” Trueheart was the cat who survived acid being poured on his face.
We, as many others did, began following the sweet survivor after the story hit. It’s also how we learned of Milo’s Sanctuary and the amazing work they do.
Back in June of 2016, Tommy was living in the California desert as a stray. He was fortunate enough to have some humans feeding him, but they were unable to give him an official home. Then one day, the friendly boy showed up with horrific wounds. Someone had poured acid on his head, which devastatingly burned his eye and part of his face!
Even more shocking, the veterinarian Tommy was initially taken to misdiagnosed the severity of his injuries and wanted to just give him antibiotics, sending him on his way. Then after testing him, they found he was FIV+ and recommended he be put down. WHAT?!!!! You know how we at the CaM house feel about that ~ argh.
Thankfully, his caregivers knew this was absolutely unacceptable and contacted Milo’s Sanctuary. He was quickly rushed to their experienced vet staff who would provide Tommy with the best chance of surviving the unthinkable abuse.
Sir Thomas spent 3 months in and out of intensive care, requiring pain medications and antibiotics.
He underwent surgery and had skin grafts to repair the damage done by the acid. Being FIV+ also made his recovery more delicate as his compromised immune system needed to be monitored closely throughout the healing process.
Sadly, he did lose his eye from the ordeal. But he gained the moniker “Trueheart” in the process.
But Tommy wouldn’t ever need to worry again.
Tommy will remain in the care of Milo’s Sanctuary and their Lifetime Care Foster homes, where he has bonded closely with volunteers and staff. He is still experiencing some issues with his eye so he will continue to visit his vet regularly to ensure the proper care is available ASAP.
He even found the purrfect gal to call his own! Girlfriend Daisy, also missing an eye, is always there to support her man.
So as he settled into his new life, Sir Trueheart began using his newly found fame to help others. Or “paw it furward” as we say here.
He could regularly be found raising funds for his fur-iends at Milo’s Sanctuary; a true advo”cat” for those less fortunate!
And when CatCon reached out with a special “offur” for Tommy, he couldn’t turn them down.
In 2017, the 3rd annual CatCon was held, introducing their first CatCon Awards. Sir Thomas was the recipient of the Biggest Newcomer at CatCon award. His new celebri-cat status has been an amazing platform to raise awareness about injured, abused or disabled felines. He shows us all that no matter what we endure in this life, it is possible to hold our heads up high and persevere!
But with FIV cats, such as Tommy and another FIV+ spokes-kitty Marmalade, their immune systems are compromised.
Health is of the upmost importance. Michele knows that the sooner you catch any signs of sickness, the better chances of treating them. She is also amazing at updating Tommy’s and all the Milo’s Sanctuary cats social media followers.
Because they were just as worried, when over the next months, Tommy had a few setbacks that landed him at the vet. But with her watchful eye and attentive heart, he was soon on the mend.
When he began to feel poorly again on October 11th, 2019, Michele took him to the vet right away.
This is Michele and I’m the President of @milos_sanctuary but more importantly I’m Tommy’s rescuer and mom. This is probably my favorite photo of Tommy and Daisy and I wanted to share it with all of you.
Thank you for all your love and prayers for Tommy. I know he’s touched so many. And I know he’s made my life better and happier in so many ways. As many of you know he’s in the hospital again with another battle ahead. His anemia is back (due to his FIV+ status). The vets believe the virus is in his bone marrow destroying with red blood cells. They are doing all the can. I know my boy is a fighter and I will fight with him and long as he keeps fighting.
She kept her promise till the day he closed his eye for the final time.
On Friday, November 1st, Michele had to do what all of us who manage social influencer animals dread…
Announce to those who’d grown to love him from near and far, that Sir Thomas Trueheart’s reign was over.
This is Michele – Tommy’s mom and this is the hardest and saddest post I have ever had to write. This morning Tommy left this world in my arms surrounded by love after having his favorite treats.
Tommy had been fighting for so long and we tried so hard to conquer the FIV that had invaded his bone marrow and was destroying his red blood cells but at the end he told me it was time to go and I honored his wish.
My Knight in Shining Fur changed me and made me a better person. He loved unconditionally and taught me and the world about forgiveness. What a legacy he leaves and all who knew him across the world were touched by his strength and courage and the love he shared with all of us will never be forgotten.
Sir Thomas Trueheart will live on in all of us.
And we will continue to honor him and those cats we rescue by continuing his page and sharing with all of you the love and dedication he showed by living each day to its fullest.
For now we will mourn his passing and I will miss him more than words can ever express. I love him with all my heart and soul. I will miss his soft fur, his gentle demeanor and his ability to comfort me on my hardest days. But as a dear friend said to me “he will be around to protect the other babies at Milo’s with his giant lion spirit.” That is the way I will choose to remember him as my Papa Lion my brave and strong friend.
Tommy would want us to continue his lessons of compassion, forgiveness, love and strength and we will honor him by doing so each and every day. So in Tommy’s honor please do something kind and unexpected for a stranger, a friend, a loved one and know that by doing so you keep Tommy alive in all of our hearts. Brightest blessings, Michele
Our hearts, tears and prayers are with Michele, the entire Milo’s Sanctuary family and will always be with Sir. Thomas “Tommy” Trueheart.
Please also follow their organization on Instagram to see all their rescues. Tommy may have been one-of-a-kind, but each rescue animal receives the same love and care as he did. They are gratefully accepting donations to help care for their other residents, just as Tommy dedicated his life to doing.
That will actually include the newest kitten Cat Man Chris Poole, dad to internet “celebricats” Cole and Marmalade, has rescued. Read her story below! We know she is going to be in the best hands possible. We knew if before Tommy took his leave of us. And with his watchful eye looking over their organization, we know it’ll hold true forever.
REMEMBER: ADOPT, DON’T SHOP; FOSTERING SAVES LIVES & SPAY AND NEUTER!