Hurricane Sandy devastated our local Long Island communities and most of the metropolitan area we serve. We had set up a pet shelter prior to the storm. Our non-profit housed over five hundred pets keeping them safe for those who could not return home or had lost their homes. Here is just one of the many stories from our emergency shelter. “Every day for the past week, Randy L. has been shuffling from the Red Cross shelter across the street to the North Shore Animal League America’s emergency animal rescue center to visit his cat Maximilian. "I live across the street from the ocean, and I watched the heavy waves as they pounded the shoreline. Around 8PM the water breached and hit the streets. I watched as the cars became Tonka toys; they were tossed about and then finally floated away like something a kid plays with in the bathtub. Max slept under the sheets and only came out to sit on my lap a few times. He was so scared. We were in total darkness.” Randy has faced many challenges in recent years, including a long battle with cancer. Max has been his steadfast companion all along the way. In fact, the last time Randy came back from an overnight stay at the hospital, Max refused to leave his side for over 24 hours. “He just wrapped himself around me; he knew I wasn’t feeling well,” says Randy.
“He knows when I’m coming home. He waits for the sound of the elevator. He’ll cry until I open the door and he can wrap himself around my shoulders. I am all he has ever known.” In a few weeks, Randy was able to move from the Red Cross shelter to a new place that allowed Max to stay. He visited Max every day.