North Wichita neighborhood bands together to rescue cat on Christmas

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WICHITA, Kan. -- On Christmas on North Topeka Street in Wichita, it wasn't Santa who neighbors saw on the roof of a home.

Instead, they woke up Christmas morning to find a little calico kitty stuck on the roof, right where she had been for the previous four days.

"I'm afraid she'll freeze or starve to death," neighbor Joe Wolf said.

It wasn't just any cat, but a neighborhood mascot of sorts. Some of the neighbors had given her the name "Janet."

"The cat had been the pet of someone in the brick building and when they moved, they abandoned it," neighbor Annette Wooldridge.

Wooldridge, an animal lover and cat owner, lives right across the street from the home.

"We promised our cat that we would get him a brother or sister for Christmas, so if there's someway we could save this cat, she will have a home with us forever," Wooldridge said.

Wooldridge had offered to take a ladder over and get the cat, but she says the property owner wouldn't let her.

So, she says, over the past few days in between finishing all the jobs for her flooring business, she called the fire department, the police department, animal control, and other agencies.

But she says nobody ever came.

"For the cat to be up there and crying like that, it's horrible," Wooldridge said.

On Christmas day, she and several other neighbors decided enough was enough and it was time to take matters into their own hands.

Neighbors who didn't even know each other, banded together in the home's backyard. They put aside their Christmas celebrations to try whatever they could to get the kitty down.

But unable to reach the kitty themselves, and having had no luck with another round of calls, they reached out to KAKE News.

KAKE News called police dispatch and about 15 minutes later, a fire truck arrived with a ladder.

A Wichita firefighter climbed up to the roof, scooped up the cat, and carried her down the ladder in his arms.

The firefighters handed the kitty to Joe as Annette cried tears of joy. Another neighbor, Michael, held a tin full of food that the cat eagerly ate out of.

"I'm just overjoyed," Wolf said.

Annette and the others say it was the best present they could have ever asked for: to be able to save the kitty and give her a home.

Annette kept her promise to make that home her home.

"She's not a stray anymore!" Wooldridge said.

"If there is anything like a Christmas miracle, this is it," Wolf said.

The neighbors decided to rename that Christmas miracle, "Kake."

"Thank you, thank you. Merry Christmas," Wooldridge said.

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