Every night, Willie Ortiz, a retired soldier, school bus driver, mechanic and welder at Hartford Hospital in Connecticut, fills his old minivan from floor to ceiling with cat food and goes on tour.
He made a total of 16 stops throughout the city, feeding a total of 68 stray cats. Over the past 22 years, this modest and calm man has not missed a single evening to pamper his feline friends.
It all started in 1995, when Ortiz witnessed a hungry cat begging for food from his friend’s auto repair shop. People pushed the cat away, refusing to help. Ortiz began feeding the cat and soon discovered several stray cats in Hartford who also needed it.
The monthly food bill for almost 70 kittens is about $600. Ortiz also captures and releases wild cats, seeks veterinary help for them, provides them with vaccines and sterilization operations. And also takes kittens for custody and adoption. The costs are certainly increasing.
To continue his night mission, 76-year-old Ortiz spends all day, regardless of the weather, collecting scrap metal for sale.
He earns from $20 to $60 a day. Community members who have heard about Willy’s wonderful case often call him with metal donations.
Ortiz humbly accepts financial donations, but refuses to spend money on anything other than food and cat care. He doesn’t even accept gas money for his van! A friend of Mr. Ortiz has created a GoFundMe page in his honor, where you can learn more about this amazing man and donate to his mission.