More than one-year ago, a family boarded a plane bound for Detroit from Hawaii, but one of its members never made it to the final destination. His name? Bogie – a sweet Siamese cat who escaped from his United Cargo flight kennel before liftoff.
“Our agents were working to secure the door of the kennel with plastic ties to ensue Bogie’s safety throughout the flight,” United Airlines spokesperson Charles Hobart said in a message to KHON2 about the cat from Hawaii getting separated from his family. “However, during this process the cat escaped from his kennel. Our teams searched for the cat and put up posters in the surrounding areas.”
Although never forgotten by his family, Bogie the cat hadn’t resurfaced after his escape, leading the family to think that their family pet was gone forever. That is until Bill Antilla, a volunteer with the nonprofit group Hawaii CatFriends, spotted him while feeding stray and feral cats on Oahu.
“I found Bogie about six or eight months ago. There’s a number of cats I manage on Ualena Street near the Honolulu airport. Bogie started showing up periodically,” said Antilla. “He looked like a purebred Siamese cat.”
Antilla, who feeds a colony of stray cats on Ualena Street three nights a week, picked Bogie out of the cat crowd due to his friendly disposition, and features; both of which prompted him to take along a microchip scanner on his next feeding excursion. The results? Microchip positive!
With the microchip results, the Hawaiian Humane Society was able to trace Bogie back to a family in Detroit – the very family who had lost hope in seeing Bogie again, and were overjoyed at hearing the news of his recovery.
“Probably about 30 minutes later, I received a call from the daughter. She was just ecstatic we found Bogie,” Antilla said. “If he wasn’t microchipped, he would not have made his way home.”
This past Thursday, CatFriends placed Bogie on a United Cargo flight to Detroit, where he was reunited with his family on Friday morning.
“They’re so excited to have him back,” said CatFriends president Jennifer Kishimori. “They said now when they brought him home, they have carpeting, and he’s thrilled to roll around on carpeting and not on the street anymore.”
United Airlines spokesperson Charles Hobart shares the family’s excitement over Bogie’s return, stating “We are overjoyed that Bogie has been reunited with his owner.”
Cheers to unexpected reunions and the magical powers of microchips!