PICKERINGTON, OH (WCMH) — One man says he lost his emotional support animal on Memorial Day Weekend while driving through Columbus.
Since then, a group of people have been on a mission to help the veteran find him.
Ehrin Anderson served our country for 12 years.
For the last 10 years, his life has been on the road along with his two cats.
On Memorial Day his 12-year-old cat, Pumpkin, got out of the truck while Ehrin was sleeping. Since then he and a group of volunteers from Pickerington have been searching for answers.
“Pure hell. Hardest thing in my life,” that’s what Anderson says the last few months have been like.
It’s the hardest thing he’s had to deal with in a life that wasn’t easy to begin with.
Anderson lives life on the road but before it was life overseas.
“I gave up a job in Afghanistan to come back here. He helped me back from a dark place.”
He served in the Army Reserves, the Navy, and even worked as a government contractor.
On Memorial Day weekend his emotional support animal, Pumpkin, escaped while he was sleeping outside the Scramblers in Pickerington.
“He rolled down my window and got out. When I woke up, he was gone.”
Volunteers formed search parties and combed through the brush, but they found nothing.
“It’s consuming me,” said volunteer Lori Coulter. “I have five cats and I would want somebody to do that for me and I can’t imagine how he felt just driving away leaving his cat.”
Then there was a break in the case when the local fire department removed a cat from someone’s wheel well in the parking lot where Pumpkin went missing.
The driver said she thought it was her neighbor’s cat and took him to her apartment complex near Brice and Refugee roads. She said the cat turned out not to be her neighbors and she let him out near a cat colony in the woods behind the complex.
The group looking for Pumpkin has puts out flyers and enlisted the help of a cat trapper.
“So, every sighting that we get I’ve been going to. I trap the cats there and try and find Pumpkin,” said Sadie Price.
Of the cats they have trapped, Anderson has adopted one of them, but he still misses Pumpkin. With the cold temperatures upon us, a reward is being given in hopes Pumpkin can be back where he belongs.
“I miss my critter. That’s all I can say. I’m heart broken and my life is at a standstill without him,” said Anderson.
Ultimately Anderson wants to know what happened to Pumpkin even if it’s bad news. Pumpkin is micro chipped and neutered. If you would like to donate to the group searching for Pumpkin there is a GoFundMe page set up and you can join the Facebook page dedicated to finding the cat.