Injured Kitten Rescued by Air Force Technician

Life is mysterious in the way it makes us cross paths with others who can change our lives. Last month, Canadian Air Force technician, Shawn Matchett, and his two children, just happened to be at a parade in downtown Toronto when he saw a kitten dart under a truck. It was slow-moving street sweeper that was cleaning up after the parade, but there was no doubt this kitten was in danger’s way.

“He came flying out into the middle of the road. A maintenance truck stopped and the cat ran under the truck, recalled Matchett. “I climbed under the truck. He had gotten up into the shocks of the truck behind the back wheel. I got him down and didn’t see his injury at first. He clung right to me and was scared. He smelled like garbage and was really dirty.”

Matchett then noticed that something was very wrong with the kitten’s back leg, as if it had been partially crushed. He wrapped the kitten up and immediately took him to a Toronto vet who presented him with unfortunate news: either the kitten would have to be put down or the leg would have to come off.

Matchett reached into his own pocket to pay the $500 vet bill to have the leg amputated, even though he knew his current circumstances wouldn’t allow him to keep the kitten. “This guy was so young and had such a life ahead of him, so I said go ahead (and do the surgery).”

Again, fate crossed the duo’s path as while Matchett was at PetSmart on the way home from the Vet, he met two volunteers from a cat rescue group, called Street Cat. They offered to take the kitten, nurse him back to health and find him a permanent home.

The rescue group named the little three-legged orange and white kitten Alpha Bravo, in honor of Matchett.

Matchett, of course, had to visit the kitten in his foster home and remarked how strong Bravo is, despite his hard start to life.

Matchett also visited the Facebook page featuring Bravo. He read some of the comments, where people commended the Air Force tech for his magnanimity. “I read the comments and they said it such a rare thing I did. I don’t think it is,” he said. “In the military, we do our job to make the world a better place. This is part of that same commitmentĚ.”

This guy is a true hero – and the world truly is a better place because he is in it. Just ask one little three-legged kitten, who would if he could, give his rescuer a heartfelt salute.


Photo Credit: Street Cats, Toronto



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Mary Cromley
.3 years ago

Good story.

Panchali Yapa
Panchali Yapa3 years ago

Thank you

Cheryl Mallon-Bond

Bless Shawn's heart for saving that babies life! & at his own expense! He also taught his two children a life lesson in kindness & compassion towards animals. He is selfless by serving his country & by his selflessness towards a little fragile kitten in need. The world needs more good & decent men like Shawn!

Kathy K.
Kathy K3 years ago

Many thanks to Shawn Matchett for saving this kitten's life!

Angela Kohn
Angela K3 years ago

That was really "destiny" .... great man and true hero! WOW :-))

Joanna M.
Joanna M3 years ago

Please sign my petition - pledge to adopt at least one rescued dog or cat in your lifetime! So many animals need US to give them a second chance at life!

Samioneric Samioneric
Past Member 4 years ago

The written piece is truly fruitful for me personally; continue posting these types of articles.

Jeanne Rogers
Jeanne R4 years ago

A true hero, indeed!

Karen O'Halloran
Karen O'Halloran4 years ago

I love what Shawn Matchett did for Alpha Bravo. What an admirable man he is!

Sheri Schongold
Sheri Schongold4 years ago

Matchett is a hero. He saved the Bravo two times. On the street and at the vet's. He will be lovingly remembered.