In the midst of this heartbreaking story, people have been searching for any signs of hope — and the story of one very lucky black cat is providing a little light in the darkness.
The Gonzalez family, residence in the condo’s 9th floor, were among the many families affected by the collapse. Angela Gonzalez and her 16-year-old daughter Devon fell four stories. The mother suffered broken ribs but still pulled her daughter from the rubble, according to CBS Miami.
The two have been recovering from serious injuries, and the family father, Edgar Gonzalez, is among the victims currently unaccounted for.
On top of everything else, the family’s pet black cat, Binx, was missing after the collapse. The family put up posts on social media hoping the cat would turn up, but weeks passed with no sign of him.
But then, a miracle: a black cat was seen wandering around near the rubble, and was brought to cat rescue group The Kitty Campus. Soon, the cat was identified as Binx!
It was a miracle that everyone had been waiting for.
“All we needed was a ray of hope in this tragedy… Today was one of the most amazing days,” Gina Nicole Vlasek of The Kitty Campus wrote on Facebook.
“When I got word that we may have found the kitty that could bring some type of light to a family that is in dark times, it was a no-brainer,” Diana Peluzzo, a volunteer who transported Binx to the rescue, told the Washington Post. “He was a little scared, but he let me pick him up, love on him.”
Binx had somehow escaped the collapse, and will now be reunited with his family, who will no doubt be very relieved.
Survivors and families have been holding out hope for miracles. With many people unaccounted for and a search operation underway over the past few weeks, people have been praying their loved ones might still be alive. Sadly, no survivors have been pulled from the debris in two weeks.
But while it can’t make up for the tragic human loss, Binx’s survival is a sliver of good news amidst the tragedy.
“In the middle of this sadness, we were hoping for good news either for any survivors or any pet,” Maria Gaspari, an animal advocate and a friend of the family, told WSVN. “As you may know, pets are family, and this is a miracle. I’m shaking right now.”
“That’s actually Deven’s cat, so I’m sure she’s going to be over the moon knowing that they found her cat. I just can’t believe it. I just couldn’t believe it when we received the confirmation. This is a miracle for the whole Surfside community.”
“I’m glad that this small miracle could bring some light into the lives of a hurting family today and provide a bright spot for our whole community in the midst of this terrible tragedy,” Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said in a press conference, according to NPR.
Whoever said black cats are bad luck have never met Binx — what a miracle he survived, and can bring a little joy to this family who has suffered so much from this tragedy.