The stray cat that became a celebrity pet and an author’s hero has died at the age of 14. Bob was the inspiration behind a series of books entitled A Street Cat Named Bob: And How He Saved My Life written by former busker and heroin addict James Bowen. It became a massive hit that it was adapted into a film of the same title that came out in 2016.
People will most likely remember Bob the ginger cat in a viral video years ago of a busker in the streets of London with a cat standing on his shoulders with an adorable scarf.
According to the The Daily Mail, Hodder & Stoughton, who published the bestselling book back in 2012, confirmed the news in a statement.
“As James and Bob continued to find fans all over the world, Bob led an incredible life meeting well-wishers at book signings, traveling the world and coping with feline fame. He was an extraordinary cat who will be greatly missed,” the statement read.
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According to a report by The BBC, Bowen and Bob’s relationship began in 2007 in the midst of the author’s battle with heroin addiction. He found the cat injured and abandoned, and decided to take him in.
Soon after, he began bringing Bob with him, donning a tiny scarf, and together they would go busking on the streets of London or selling The Big Issue to make a living and support both of them.
The journey was difficult for Bowen, experiencing hardship as he struggled with relapse as he tried to become sober. He would often think about Bob and who would care for him if he went back to his old ways or died from a drug overdose.
Eventually, Bowen wrote the first book of the A Cat Named Bob series, detailing their relationship and how he believes Bob saved his life.
Saving Bowen’s Life
The autobiography became a hit and was followed by five more books that became bestsellers and have been translated in over 40 languages as well as a film adaptation, featuring Bob himself along with six of his lookalikes, according to The Guardian.
The feline will also be starring in a sequel, A Gift From Bob, which will be shown later this year. Unfortunately, Bob himself won’t be able to walk the red carpet with his human and won’t be able to see himself on the silver screen again.
In a Facebook post by Bowen from the official account of one of his books, he said that Bob had saved him. “It’s as simple as that. He gave me so much more than companionship. With him at my side, I found a direction and purpose that I’d been missing,” the author wrote. “He’s met thousands of people, touched millions of lives. There’s never been a cat like him. And never will again.”
He further added that he felt like “the light has gone out of my life” and that he will never forget his furry savior.
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