At 6:30 PM on June 30, 2015, as I embraced the pure innocence of one of God’s most precious creatures and the best friend I ever had, the Mighty Little Man took his last breath. Considering the incredible events he survived, to live a full life of 13 years and 3 months was a remarkable feat to say the least.
Before he left, we had some quiet time together. I petted him, caressed him, kissed him, and told him I loved him. I also gave him some special instructions, and although the only people who will understand the following statement are those who have read our book, I told him one other thing — I told him her name.
But now I have something else I wish to share.
Within a few weeks after our book, Mighty Little Man: My Story, His Story, Our Story, was published, I was featured live on WHNT News 19 in Huntsville, Alabama. Near the end of the interview, the host, Carrie Marchese, showed three pictures of Little Man that she had downloaded from our website at www.mightylittleman.com. Seeing those pictures shown live on the air was a complete surprise to me as I had no idea she had planned to do that. As we sat in the studio and wrapped up the interview, the pictures were shown one at a time on the full screen, and I spoke a little about each one — but I was thinking something else.
I have decided to begin work on another book about Little Man. Because of various events and discoveries since Mighty Little Man was published, I feel a second book is necessary. The following words will likely grace the last, unnumbered page:
It is written in Hebrews 11:1, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” I must confess, however, that I consider myself blessed among men, for I have seen the evidence of His work, and I have felt the substance of His presence. Put another way, I have felt God through the love I shared with my furry, feline friend. Even before I understood the severity of the devastation that would later befall me in which I would find myself alone in the dark and my world destroyed, God sent me Little Man. I will cherish our bond forever. I therefore wish to thank God for entrusting me with the care of one of His most precious souls and for giving him back to me, for a time, from the very brink of death as only He could.
I also wish to thank the world’s most preeminent cat, Little Man, for sharing his life and his perfect love with an imperfect man like me. Along the way I always thought I was taking care of him, but in reality it was he who took care of me.
For some time to come, we will be apart. But when Little Man and I are reunited for all eternity at the center of the Rainbow Bridge, I will pick him up, hold him close, look into his eyes, and repeat to him my thoughts from that day in the studio when I first came to know that the Mighty Little Man was destined for something very special, the same thoughts I now share with the world.
I will say, “Wow! Little Man, you did it, Buddy, you really did. You are the Mighty Little Man, and I will love you … always.”
JONATHON SCOTT PAYNE
Jonny and Little Man: their last earthly moment.
I love you, too, Little Man. We’ll be together again soon.