Yes, friends, it’s been a difficult evening.  We lost another great one tonight, this time much too soon.  And for any of you who’ve had to deal with the agony of euthanizing an animal – of literally watching the light go out – let me tell you, it never gets any easier.

Benny was truly a special being.  He lived pretty much all of his short life with the Militant – my dear friend who I’ve recently blogged about in some of our rescue journeys – and held a special place in the hearts of all who met him…especially other animals.  (For those of you who saw that Mila the Miracle Kitty video a few entries ago, “Uncle Benny” was the very patient Siamese who Mila was playing with toward the end.)

With rescue-related stories so often being about humans affecting animal’s lives, I wanted to share with you all an e-mail that the Militant sent out to those in her inner circle, announcing Benny’s passing tonight.  Clearly, this is a story about a “rescue” affecting all of the lives around him, both human and animal.


E-mail from the Militant:

In Loving Memory of Benny
May 1, 2008 – November 10, 2009

Gio and I rescued Benny off the streets of North Hills in June of 2008, from a terrible neighborhood where few cats survive. He was only 5 weeks old.

Eric, a homeless man we knew in that alleyway, wanted to adopt Benny, but we convinced him that it wasn’t the best idea. He agreed, but asked if he could at least name him. “Please call him ‘Benjamin’, but call him ‘Benny’ for short”, he said. And so, from that moment onward, this beautiful spirit, housed in an equally beautiful body of a Siamese cat, was known as “Benny.”

bennykittyA very young Benjamin!

From the second we met Benny, his independent, strong-minded, tenacious, and spirited personality came shining threw like a bright light. We knew instantly…this was a special being…dignified, considerate, patient, intelligent, and kind.

Not too long after his arrival, I began to call Benny “my Prozac.” Benny would light up the room with his zest and love for life, and would put a smile on your lips, without fail. He embodied and exuded joy – pure, carefree, loving joy.

Benny was a friend to all he knew. He was every bit the rescuer that I ever hoped I’d be. When a new dog or cat came in the house, Benny took it upon himself to help that animal and befriend them. He would groom the kittens, patiently allow them to suckle on him, and lovingly play with them. He would teach the poorly socialized cats (and dogs) how to be more social with others and how to play. He would take on any “problem animal” as his own personal project, and not give up on him/her, as many times as he/she would push him away. He would persist until they would give in and until they were “rehabilitated” – Bo (a one year-old cat with no kitty social skills whatsoever) being his most successful project! In return, Bo ended up worshiping Benny, and did not leave his side in the last two weeks when Benny was ill. Wherever Benny went, Bo followed, loyally. Bo loved his best friend.

Benny’s stay with us here on earth was very short, but his mission was clear and profound: heal others through joy and love. He was a dignified being who lived his life passionately, and completely fulfilled the purpose of his spirit’s incarnation. He came, he did what he knew he had come here to do, and he made his exit, back to the other realm.

We all loved this special boy, and will miss him so dearly. I know the days ahead will be difficult for those of us who knew him well, as we will mourn the loss of our sweet Benny (especially poor Bo, who keeps going to the window and crying for him, wondering where he went). But I know that he will come and visit us still, and that his legacy of kindness and joy will live on through all the beings, four-legged and two-legged, whose hearts he’s touched so deeply in his brief stay here on earth.

To my rescue partner, child, and friend….

Thank you for blessing my life with your presence.

I will miss you.

(The Militant)


Unfortunately, Benny had a terminal condition and tonight was his time to go.  We had to hasten the inevitable slightly, though, so his suffering was minimal. I was at the hospital with the Militant and her sister, and we were all around him as he made the transition.  At least he left this plane in peace, surrounded by love.

There is an incomprehensible sanctity to every animal’s life.  And while Benny’s passing is certainly a reminder of this truth…his life was the embodiment of it.

We love you, Benny –


About Bobby Rock

Bobby Rock is a world renown drummer, the author of nine books, and a recognized health and fitness specialist with certifications in exercise, nutrition and meditation. He has recorded and toured with a variety of artists, released three CDs as a solo performer and is recognized as a top drumming educator. He is currently touring with rock icon, Lita Ford. Through speaking, writing and activism, Bobby remains committed to a number of animal and environmental causes. Bobby lives in Los Angeles.
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7 Responses to Benjamin

  1. Christine says:

    Animals can teach us about life. In reading your posting of the Militant’s email, I think Benjamin taught us about unconditional love.

  2. Despina says:

    My cat is very ill right now and i understand the feeling. RIP Ben!

  3. Iron says:

    I love you Benny and your Mommy

  4. LISAMARIE says:

    So sorry to hear about Benny; perfect example of how animals are the best teachers for us on how to be human!
    BTW, since you mentioned Mila briefly, Bobby and if I may ask, do you have an update on her and how she is doing?

  5. Bobby Rock says:

    Thank you all for your responses.

    Despina – I hope your baby recovers okay.

    Lisamarie – Mila is great. There have been a number of good folks who have expressed an interest in her. I’m sure she’ll find her forever home very soon.


  6. Despina says:

    Thank you Bobby! Unfortunately my baby raven passed away this morning from heart failure. I am very heartbroken but now raven and benny are playing together in heaven !

  7. Bobby Rock says:

    So, so sorry to hear about it. But indeed – their journey continues elsewhere…under much better conditions, I might add!

    Hang in there –

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