Thank You Marcial Rios-Aguilar

Cat #0952341 at NYC ACC Manhattan, as pictured on PetHarbor.
Cat #0952341 at NYC ACC Manhattan, as pictured on PetHarbor.

A 53 year old man named Marcial Rios-Aguilar risked and tragically lost his life trying to save this cat from a tree in the Bronx at 3 a.m. on Monday.  Mr. Rios-Aguilar fell from the tree and died before he could help the cat.  Firefighters arrived on the scene and got the kitty out the tree.  Sadly, the cat was sent to the Manhattan pound where, statistically speaking, he has a good chance of getting sick and/or getting killed.

This story is yet another example of why we need a safe haven for homeless pets.  And I really don’t want to hear about the so-called irresponsible public “forcing” pound workers to kill animals.  A member of the public died trying to save this cat.  I don’t think it’s too much to ask that public employees do their jobs and actually shelter pets in need.


14 thoughts on “Thank You Marcial Rios-Aguilar

  1. It would be a nice tribute to this man if someone adopted the cat. Apparently his family did not share his love for animals.

    1. They were offered the cat and opted not to adopt. I think that’s perfectly understandable considering the circumstances and the shock they were in.

      This story is local to me and our paper had more coverage. The shelter has promised the cat (now named Smokey) won’t be euthanized specifically because ‘someone died to rescue it.’ So it would seem it takes a man’s death to make that shelter see an animal as worthy of life.

  2. “A member of the public died trying to save this cat. I don’t think it’s too much to ask that public employees do their jobs and actually shelter pets in need.”


  3. This should be national news – and it would get this cat adopted. My heartaches…What a wonderful compassionate man we just lost…

    1. Sadly, there is a large subset of people who either have already or will upon hearing about this man, make vicious, horrible, cruel comments about how the cat should have been left in the tree and/or how the man was (not my thoughts) a fool to try to save a stupid cat (also not my thoughts).

      So, if this story doesn’t get a wider circulation, that could be a good thing, because the world doesn’t need the extra vile bile.

      My thoughts go out to his family and I hope they can all accept that he was a good man, trying to do what he thought was a good thing.

  4. Ok, admittedly I am ignorant with respect to cats and their behavior..but what constitutes the idea that cats can’t climb DOWN from a there something fundamental inherent that makes a species that is arguably the most adaptive and interdependent successors to survival of any domesticated (domesticated..perhaps that is a stretch even) animal that they are incapable of getting themselves out of a tree?? Just asking.

    1. In my paper someone (I think either the shelter worker or one of the firemen who eventually rescued the cat) is quoted as saying no one needed to rescue the cat in the first place.

      However, cats can and do get stuck in trees. It has to do with their claws. If you look at a cat’s claws, they hook backward toward the body. Going up is easy, but to come down the claws actually get in their way if they try coming down tail first. They usually have to turn around and come down head first so that the claws come out of the bark easier. Coming down head first is likely scary and just not easy.

      Like everything else, cats have to LEARN to navigate trees. Even jaguars which spend a great deal of time in trees learn how to safely climb from the mother. And jaguar trees typically aren’t very tall!

      1. Thanks for it is like they can ‘check in’ but they can’t ‘check out’

  5. Fire fighters in our town are finally allowed to help cats stranded in trees because several people have been injured (thankfully not killed) going to the rescue. Occasionally common sense and compassion guides our public policy.

  6. I will take the cat , he looks like one I bottlefed when I found him in my back yard screaming in a rainstorm, we called him Screech! I have no way of getting him to TN

    1. If you can add another cat to your family, please look at local cats who would appreciate being adopted. I’m sure that there is one who would fit nicely into your family.

  7. In the name of Marcial Rios -Aguliar this Cat should be saved. ! I
    It would be disrespectful to harm this Cat in ANY WAY . Am calling tomorrow to Pull
    Peace M/R/A Bless You ==you did not die in vain =-St Francis will watch over your beautiful soul for Eternity==Peace

Leave a Reply