Kitten named Survivor clings to owner amid Florence flood rescue

Blanche Robertson
September 16, 2018

It all began with this photo from Charlotte Observer reporter Andrew Carter on Friday evening, showing Robert Simmons, Jr. of New Bern, North Carolina being rescued with his kitten.

Andrew Carter, the reporter who took the photo, said he had nearly stopped covering the boat rescues before meeting Robert and Survivor.

More than two feet of rain has fallen in the area.

The overflowing Neuse River swamped the streets of New Bern with water so deep only the tops of street signs were visible.

Mr Simmons told the Raleigh News & Observer: "We done been through Bertha, Fran, Irene, Matthew".

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Another photo shows Survivor huddled inside Simmons' jacket. The lifelong resident of New Bern said this storm was "the worst it's ever been". Simmons wanted his father to come with him on the rescue boat, but the father wanted to stay behind, according to Carter. Then it crawled out and clung to the man's shoulder as the boat made its way through the flood waters.

"I didn't want him to wait it out", Simmons said.

Officials say hundreds of people in New Bern have been rescued from high water. The city said Saturday that all rescues had been completed, with just over 450 people taken to dry ground.

Emergency crews are working around the clock to retrieve them.

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