COLUMBIA, SC (WACH) — Tabitha Aldrich says she’s been homeless for eight years. When she saw a squirrel about to get hit by a car, she jumped into action. She got the squirrel out of the street and brought him to Memorial Park in Downtown Columbia.
“We tried to release him here at Memorial Park but he just kept on following us,” says Aldrich.
She shared what little food she had with the squirrel she named Rocky, loaded up some minutes on her phone and called Laura Ross with Squirreltopia Wildlife Rescue.
“They shared bits of their honey bun with him to keep him alive in between the sugar and the carbs it was enough to keep him up until I could get there,” says Ross. “There were 1,000 other things they could’ve been doing. One-thousand other things that we imagine homeless people do but they weren’t. They were saving a little squirrel.”
Ross says that the squirrel was distraught and starving, and that Aldrich did the right thing by calling for help.
“When they need help they will come up to people,” says Aldrich. “Wild baby animals are naturally afraid of us and do not try to come up to us unless something is wrong. So if they are walking up to us they are starving to death.”
Ross says that Rocky is doing much better; he’s eating and growing, very active and playful.
Aldrich said they knew they weren’t going to be able to provide the resources to get Rocky back on his feet.
“I was heartbroken that we couldn’t keep him,” says Aldrich. “But It makes me feel good that I was able to help Rocky out.”
Ross says Aldrich’s act of kindness touched her deeply, especially because she didn’t have much and she didn’t ask for anything in return.
“They could’ve done a lot of things. They could’ve tried to make me buy the squirrel, but they didn’t,” says Ross. “They even checked back the next day to make sure he was OK, and check on him. I think that is phenomenal.”
Ross has setup a GoFundMe for Aldrich hoping to raise some funds to thank her for her kindness to Rocky. If you’d like to donate click here.