LaMoine R.

Nebraska

LaMoine Roth

2014 Winner

York, NE
Nominated by Donna Rhoades

Volunteered for:

York Adopt-A-Pet

Length of Service:

80+ hours per month for 16 years

February 4, 2014

Every neglected, abused or abandoned cat has a story to tell. Unfortunately, too many never live to tell their story. But LaMoine R. is working to increase the odds of happier endings.
"Animals have no voice," the spirited rescuer says. "We need to be that voice. We are literally the fine line between their rescue and their death."
That belief was what propelled my candidate into the world of cat rescue, a world she has never left in more than 16 years. Now at 66 years of age, she is still hitting her 40 to 50 hours-a-week stride! "It would be nice to knock that down to around 20 hours a week but the need is so great, how do you stop?"
Something she has never considered since 1998 when the first abandoned kittens entered her home. That was the beginning of the never ending stream who have been the recipient of LaMoine's nurturing care. Her philosophy? "Saving one cat won't change the world, but surely the world will change for that one cat."
Publicly advocating for her furry clients, her voice has been effective, attracting a network of volunteers who insure the continuity of the program and bringing public awareness to the plight of abused and neglected animals. Additionally, she has transported thousands of cats, saving city and county officials tax dollars, has lessened the pain of senior citizens in relinquishing their beloved pets when health concerns demand it, and has found forever home for cats who previously lived in culverts, roamed alleys looking for food, were victims of horrible abuse, or were thrown away when their owners tired of them.
When Hurricane Katrina devastated the coast, Hearts Hunted in Auburn transported 30 cats to YAAP from New Orleans. When LaMoine received them they were scared, thin, and stressed, but promptly named, cared for and adopted. LaMoine has kept in contact with all adopters.
As the operation that started in her home quickly grew, it was re-located to a specially built garage in her backyard and eventually found a permanent place in York Adopt-A-Pet, a no-kill facility that was built and partially funded through countless fundraisers aided by LaMoine's consistent willingness to dig in and help, applying her organizational skills as well as her auctioneering expertise to the ongoing business of raising money for the cause she so deeply believes in. Having a small part in making the facility a reality is an endeavor of which LaMoine is particularly proud.
"Our state of the art building was attained by acquiring a 40 year loan from the USDA. I will never live long enough to see it paid in full, but I rest assured that long after I am gone abandoned and abused animals will find refuge in our shelter."
An avid volunteer at that facility, LaMoine has done it all from rescuing to cleaning kennels to managing all the computer work, including permanent records of each cat's medical records and who adopted them.
"Every cat has a name, a picture, a history and a story."
Compassion and emotional tears spill over as she talks about the animals she has taken to the shelter to be health-checked and spayed or neutered and the situations she has encountered. A mother came to her shortly after her 35-year-old husband had died suddenly. Six months later, she gave birth to her daughter. Through her bittersweet situation, her two cats sensed her sorrow and were constantly by her side. When she discovered her newborn son had a breathing problem and could not tolerate the cats, she knew she had to part with them and she knew the perfect person to contact.
With tears in her eyes, she asked LaMoine to find a "together" home for the pair as, given the trauma they had all been through, she couldn't bear the thought of separating them.
That's when LaMoine went to work. She advertised and waited, turning down offers to take just one of the cats. Finally, her patience paid off. She found the perfect fit in a woman from Texas who was more than willing to take both cats. To save her the long drive from Texas, LaMoine packed up the cats and at her own expense, made a trip of 150 miles to meet her half way.
"When I met her, I knew she would be the perfect person to care for the cats. That's what this "calling" is all about, finding perfect fits that lead to forever homes."
It is more demanding than a full time job. There is no time clock to be punched and work hours are whenever she is called out, even if it is 3 a.m. on a cold, snowy morning.
Why does she do it? The answer is simple and in her own words:
"Rescuing is a calling, a gut reaction, a determination to right the wrongs of others. I don't even think it is a conscience choice we make. You live it, eat it, sleep it, breathe it and you take it everywhere you go. It is just who you are.
At times it is overwhelming but I can't imagine life without the desire to rescue."
 

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Nominations - 1,060

Votes - 110,781

Prize Description

The National Winner’s designated non-profit charity will receive a $5,000 donation, courtesy of Home Instead, Inc., the franchisor of the Home Instead Senior Care® franchise network. Each Local Winner’s designated non-profit charity will receive a $500 donation. All Winners will receive a certificate and a spot in the Contest’s “Wall of Fame” here on SaluteToSeniorService.com in recognition of their outstanding service.

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