Willie Ortiz is a 76-year-old scrap metal collector and veteran from Hartford, Connecticut. He has been feeding stray animals in his neighborhood for 22 years and has never missed a day. Regardless of the weather, whether it’s raining, snowing, or very cold, he goes out and gathers scrap metal to help pay for food and cat supplies.
Willie looks after them, feeding them every night and spraying and neutering them to keep the stray population under control.
He started feeding for the stray cats after he saw people ignoring a hungry kitten begging for food. “People were pushing it away, and I could see it needed help,” Willie said. “I know these cats can’t understand my accent, but I need to do something.” From that day, he decided that caring for stray cats was his life’s mission.
Every morning Willie drives around collecting scraps to sell, and every evening he leaves his home with tins of sardines and cat food, feeds the cats, and checks on their health. The cats that he cares for are very healthy and well fed.
Not only does Willie feed the cats every day, he cares for the injured or sick cats and bring them in to get the medical care they need. Although his job is very difficult, Willie says that it is his life and it makes him truly happy. Willie says he will continue feeding the cats for as long as he can.
Kathleen Schlentz started a GoFundMe campaign last year to assist Willie buy extra food for the kitties. It exceeded its goal, which is unsurprising, but you may still contribute to this project. We hope that those who believe in Willie’s cause will continue to donate.
“Presently he feeds 16 colonies of stray and feral cats, a total of 68 cats, every night, 365 days a year and has never missed a night in 22 years,” Kathleen Schlentz said via GoFundMe. “He makes sure they get what they need to have as good a life as possible.”
More individuals like Willie are needed in the world, people whose everyday good actions make the world a better place. However, not everyone agrees with his choice. “People often question why I feed them every day or complain that I give them too much,” Ortiz added. “Do you eat every day?” You’ll receive three meals a day, and they’ll only eat once every 24 hours.”
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