City of Poughkeepsie Police Save Cat After Building Collapse
When the building at 19 Academy Street collapsed last week, it trapped more than humans. Suny, a family pet owned by Francisco and Rebecca Vallardes of 17 Academy Street was also trapped under bricks and other debris. Trapped until being rescued by City of Poughkeepsie Police Officers Tony Morrone, Mike Labrada and Animal Control Officer Theresa Matuck.
The cat was heard crying underneath the debris behind 17 Academy and was uncovered by the officers. Matuck transported the severely injured feline to Arlington Animal Hospital for emergency care. Due to the inability to return home, the Vallardes family spent two days trying to learn the fate of their pet. When Mrs. Vallardes finally learned that the cat was alive and at the hospital, she rushed out there.
The joy of being reunited with Suny was overshadowed by grief when she learned that the cat would require $2,000 worth of surgeries to be brought back to health. After losing everything, Vallardes was distraught but she traveled back to the collapsed buildings searching for the officers that saved her cat. She located officer Morrone last Wednesday and immediately broke down crying as she hugged the officer for saving "the only thing they have left."
Morrone, an officer in Poughkeepsie for more than 17 years, listened as Mrs. Vallardes told of the cat's situation. After his shift that day, Morrone once again went "above and beyond" according to Poughkeepsie Mayor Rob Rolison and created a GoFundMe page to help the family overcome their losses. According to Morrone "it is my hope, through the power of Facebook and GoFundMe that we will be able to help her (Vallardes) pay for the cost of the multiple surgeries. Any monies collected above the $2,000 will go towards the replacement of food, clothing and housing for the Vallardes family."
Mayor Rolison told Hudson Valley Post that he's "not surprised by his officers actions. City of Poughkeepsie employees are always willing to go the extra step!"
The GoFundMe page can be found at www.gofundme.com/pezz9s-please-help