Calvin Tucker was leaving work one afternoon and went to warm up his car when he spotted a little gray kitten, later named King Henry. The kitten, around 4 months old, was sitting by his car’s front tire.
So many times, kittens seem to know their person, choosing them on the spot. But this time, the kitten chose someone who had detested cats for their whole life. At the time, Tucker wouldn’t even go to friends’ houses if cats were present! He thought they were ‘too sneaky’ and believed he had severe allergies to cats. But when Henry caught his eye that day with his pale greenish-yellow eyes, something changed!
“He could’ve been anywhere on that property but there he was at my car. I could’ve chosen to shoo him away, but I didn’t because of how he looked at me,” Tucker recalled.
Video via Instagram/kinghenry1423
King Henry Sparks Compassion
On that day, November 15, 2015, he believes he had a calling, going on to rescue and TNR (trap, neuter, return) cats in Alabama. It’s truly remarkable; King Henry changed something profound in him.
“The way [King Henry] looked at me just did something to me. It touched me….it just opened up some compassion in me that I didn’t know existed,” he recalled in an interview.
Tucker Made Time to Care for King Henry Twice Daily
After that day, Henry continued to show up at work, and Tucker started looking after him, bringing him food and a bowl of clean water. It became a routine, checking on the kitten morning and night and even on his days off or when he was sick.
Tucker was caring for the kitten more and more, making time for him even while working two jobs. As he brought King Henry something to eat, he’d sit and talk to him, saying, “Daddy’s here.”
On the 45th day, Tucker reached out and petted Henry for the very first time.
“I had no intentions of ever owning a a cat. I hated them until he came. This was January 9, 2016, the day before he went home. The day before my whole world would change,” he shared.
Video via Instagram/kinghenry1423
King Henry’s Reign Begins
That was it; touching the kitten did something to him again, “Compassion was lit in me,” he recalled with The Dodo. Soon after Henry came home, he became the King of the house.
“Henry’s first day home,” shared kinghenry1423.
At 10 days, Henry was completely at ease in the home, remarkable for a kitten rescued from the streets.
“Day 10 at home. At this point, he was the boss.”
Eight years later, King Henry still has Dad wrapped around his paw.
“The King relaxing like he does,” shared kinghenry1423
Video by The Dodo with Calvin Tucker:
Tucker Tells Henry About All the Cats He’s Helping
After falling for the gray kitten, Tucker, who goes by ‘Black Noah,’ started noticing cats all around him. Rather than disliking them, he realized how much they needed help. It became a full-time job, as Tucker started TNR efforts to curb out-of-control populations and founded a rescue, SOCAT (Saving One Creature at a Time). Meanwhile, home is “The Ark,” where Henry reigns.
Helping animals like Henry became a big reason to get out of bed in the morning. And frequently, he comes home to tell Henry all about the cats he’s helped that day.
“He just look at me like he knows,” said Tucker.
Wherever possible, he finds homes for hundreds of cats, kittens, dogs, and other animals. And it was all because of Henry, one cute kitten that chose him that day. Did the kitten know Tucker was his person? We like to think so!
“Henry will be with me until he dies or I die. I tell him every night; he’s the reason that I’m out here doing this,” Tucker said. “I tell him every night, he’s the reason I’m that I’m out here doing this.”
Video by AL.com about ‘Black Noah’ Calvin Tucker: