Hero cat dies in New York City

October 24, 2008 12:40:23 PM PDT
A cat who became famous for rescuing her kittens from a fire in Brooklyn has died.Scarlett, who was thought to be around 13 years old, succumbed to kidney failure on Oct. 11.

In 1996, firefighters found the stray - herself badly burned - carrying her five kittens out of danger. She touched their noses as if to reassure herself before collapsing into unconsciousness.

One kitten died of a virus. Long Island's North Shore Animal League found homes for the rest.

Scarlett's eyelids were deformed, her ear tips were burned off, and the fur on her face never grew back.

She was adopted by Karen Wellen of Brooklyn.

Says Wellen: "I can't stop crying."

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