EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WEHT) — If cats have nine lives, a cat named Sinatra has probably used a few of them. He got lost after his family’s home was destroyed by Hurricane Michael, but two and a half years later, Sinatra has found his way home.
“I wish he could talk,” said Robin Vaughn. “I wish he could tell us what he’s been doing for two years.”
She and her wife, Angela Brown, who are both originally from the Illinois–Indiana–Kentucky tri-state area, were living in Panama City on Oct. 10, 2018, as they braved Hurricane Michael.
“We were in a zone that was told not to evacuate the day before so that other people could get out, and about two hours before it made landfall, we all knew it was going to be really bad,” Vaughn said.
The house Vaughn and her family were renting was destroyed, and they were trapped inside for days.
“Finally some kind people cut through the trees and we were able to get out after four days,” Vaughn explained. They eventually made it to Clay, Kentucky, and Evansville, Indiana, to be with family.
Vaughn said they left their dogs and cats with her wife’s daughter, who had a house in Evansville at the time.
“And her daughter, a few days after Sinatra was there, had opened the door and he got out. So he wasn’t familiar with that neighborhood. And they looked for him,” said Vaughn.
Even after they went back home to Florida, people were looking for Sinatra.
“This went on for days and days and days that turned into weeks that turned into months,” Vaughn said, adding that they thought Sinatra was microchipped when he was neutered, but it was later discovered that the vet forgot.
Brown posted on Facebook and had people looking for the cat.
“There was a lot of false hope,” said Vaughn. “We would get our hopes up when someone would find a cat that would look like him, and then we would check it to every detail and it wouldn’t be him, and it just broke my heart to see her [Brown] cry and to see our son, who Sinatra was his best friend.”
Linda Walker, from Another Chance for Animals, found Sinatra in December, more than two years after he disappeared.
“She found him just a couple of miles from where that home, where he was originally lost,” said Vaughn. “By the grace of God and some good folks in Evansville, Indiana, we got him home.”
Sinatra’s family recently brought him home during their spring break. They say he has bounced back into his normal routine as if he never left, and he’s not letting them out of his sight.