Cat retires to California after 18 years in Maine


This is a #maineobviously story if I’ve ever seen one. I pulled it out of the Bangor Daily News archive; it was written by Ken Ward and originally ran back on March 10, 1981.

Cat Retires to California after 18 years in Maine

“What about the ones you leave behind?” the insurance man inquires when you balk at additional coverage. “They should be looked after.”

And to some people, that includes the family pet. When pets’ lives and welfare become the arbitrary decision of the survivors, often the easiest solution of the problem is to have what has been an integral part of the family put to sleep.

But not for Millie.

When Wendell Carmichael died recently three months after his wife Dorothy’s death, Millie, the family cat for 18 years, was the cause for consternation for Carmichael’s three sons.

Virgil, Richard and Bruce are part of the closely-knit Carmichael family that operated the Quality Bakery on Ohio Street in Bangor, serving the area with fresh bread, doughnuts and pastries for more than 35 years. Millie was one of the family, sleeping on the foot of the bed, or in someone’ arms throughout the 18 years. The black-and-white mixed-breed cat is the equivalent of 126 human years.

A quick family conference decided Millie’s fate.
“No way is that cat going to be put away, said Bruce Carmichael, who moved to San Diego, Calif., last year.
“Millie had always been there. We got her when I was 10 years old,” said the 28-year-old computer operator, “and I want her to come live with me with California. I live right on the beach and she can live out her life playing in the sane.”
So brother Virgil of Bucksport checked at Bangor International Airport for “feline” class accommodations. For her private traveling quarters it was $21; air fare for Delta Air Lines was $40l two shots from the veterinarian and $17 gave Millie a clean bill of health for air travel from coast to coast.
On Monday, Millie boarded Delta’s 7:10 a.m. flight to Bangor on her way to her new home. After a change of planes in Atlanta, it was straight to San Diego, where she arrived at 6:57 p.m.
Millie, who never lacked love and affection, will again snuggle down on the foot of Bruce Carmichael’s bed and spend her days playing in the surf and sunning on the warm, sunny beaches of San Diego


Alex Steed

About Alex Steed

Alex Steed has written about and engaged in politics since he was an insufferable teenager. He has run for the Statehouse and produced a successful web series. He now runs a content firm called Knack Factory with two guys who are a lot more talented than himself.