Woman Stunned To Find Cat Alive in Pipe 3 Weeks After House Exploded


I am consistently amazed at the hardiness of cats. I mean, the domesticated American shorthair doesn’t look like the kind of creature that could survive apocalyptic scenarios.

Soft and furry, padding around on velvet paws and often scared of its own shadow, the cat seems like it would be one of the first creatures to go if catastrophe (no pun intended) struck. Yet they make it through the worst woes time and again.

No wonder we half believe that they have nine lives. In fact, looking at the case of two kitties in Topeka, Kansas, makes me half believe it myself.

The situation sounds impossible. On July 19, Ashley Nadeau and her infant daughter Rosalie had smelled gas in their house and decided they should leave.

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Not long after, the unthinkable happened. According to WIBW, an explosion decimated the structure.

Unbeknown to anyone, storms that lashed the area that very day had toppled a tree, damaging a gas line in the process. The blast that leveled Nadeau’s house was witnessed by neighbor Roger Shields, who’d been knocked from his chair by its force.

“I saw real bright, white-yellow,” Shields said. “I had absolutely no idea what had gone on, other than it was one heck of an explosion.”

Though the Nadeau’s were fine, they mourned not only the loss of their home but their two kitties, Mr. Tibbs and Kunimitsu. Unable to retrieve the pair of felines, the family had fled, leaving them behind.

Of course, no cat could survive a gas-line explosion — right? Well, not so fast.

Nadeau had to go through the insurance process, notifying her insurer of the total loss of her home. On August 7, WIBW reported that bulldozers had begun shifting the wreckage.

The workers were looking to confirm that the gas line had indeed caused the explosion. What they found was something else entirely.

They moved a pipe, and who happened to be hiding inside? If you said, “Kunimitsu,” you’d be right.

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Inspired by her kitty’s miraculous survival, Nadeau went back to the site. She was hoping to see if she could find any keepsakes among the rubble.

However, she decided to call aloud for Mr. Tibbs — and she heard him meow back. The Topeka Capital-Journal said that Nadeau quickly called her friend Melissa White.

“Shout out to the one person in the world I knew I could call to help me dig through a dangerous pile of rubble to rescue a cat,” Nadeau said. The most amazing thing was not just that the cats made it, but how little they were injured.

The Associated Press stated that Kunimitsu got a little singed, but was otherwise alright. “For something like this to have happened and for my family to get out and my pets and just really everything that mattered is OK and I just feel … and the outpouring of support from the community has been amazing,” Nadeau said.

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A graduate of Wheaton College with a degree in literature, Loren also adores language. He has served as assistant editor for Plugged In magazine and copy editor for Wildlife Photographic magazine.
A graduate of Wheaton College with a degree in literature, Loren also adores language. He has served as assistant editor for Plugged In magazine and copy editor for Wildlife Photographic magazine. Most days find him crafting copy for corporate and small-business clients, but he also occasionally indulges in creative writing. His short fiction has appeared in a number of anthologies and magazines. Loren currently lives in south Florida with his wife and three children.
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