RIP Rocko – 1993 – 2014

rocko deck
August 1993 – March 2014
Photo taken on July 15, 2012

On Monday March 10, 2014, we lost our Rocko kitty. He was 20 years and 6 months old when he passed at home.

It took me almost two weeks to put this post together: finding photos, thoughts and emotions around Rocko and his life that he lived. It’s not easy losing a pet, especially one that lived past twenty. And documenting Rocko’s life hasn’t been without a few tears shed in the process.

Early Years

the earliest photo of Rocko when he was 1 year old

Rocket Man is the official given name for Rocko [after the Elton John song]. My wife Reba got him when he was 6 weeks old. Someone dumped him in her front yard and her dog Bruno found this tiny cat under the tree in the yard. He was so small that he was able to fit in her hand. Reba says Rocko was a gift from her dad, who passed away two days before Rocko arrived on September 28, 1993.

For the next 8 years, Rocko bonded with Reba and he became a true companion.. going on walks with her and the other pets of the house [three other cats and a dog], snuggling at night and being an all around great cat.


rocko nov 2001
taken on November 15, 2001

I came into Rocko’s life in July of 2001 when I started dating Reba. So I got to spend more than 12 years with him – more than half of his life.

rock jun 2003
taken on June 8, 2003

We spent many days together out in the yard, mostly during the summer months. He would play chase with Reba and run around the yard as a very active cat.

rocko aug 2003
taken on August 24, 2003

As with all cats, Rocko loved to lay around. We tried our best to keep cat hair off the couches and carpets by laying down other items like rugs and blankets for him to sleep on.

rocko oct 2005
taken on October 15, 2005

Reba called Rocko her lover… with all of the sweet looks he would give her most of the time. She called the above his love face. And what a look of love he has.

rocko reba
snuggling with his “mom”

Rocko loved to snuggle. He was a snuggle kitty, especially with his “mom”. He snuggled me as well, but it never lasted more than a few minutes, especially if he got distracted when he saw Reba around.

rocko apr 2008
taken on April 12, 2008

Rocko loved posing for the camera. Which made it easy to get lots of pictures of him throughout the last twelve years of his life. He was also a very vocal kitty, always letting us know he was around and needed something. His last few years, I called him “howler monkey” as he howled out loud.. often in the wee hours of the morning.

rocko turkey
taken on May 19, 2010

Rocko loved people food. We tried not to spoil him too much with it, but every once in a while, he would get lunch meat or the leftovers of a cooked turkey.

rocko full face
taken on March 8, 2011

Both Reba and I always called him out beautiful boy. And with a face like that, who wouldn’t say he was a great looking cat.

rocko nov 2012
taken on November 18, 2012

Rocko was mostly a very healthy cat, but had some infected teeth that needed to be removed by surgery. He also started going blind in his right eye, due to fights with rats and rodents that would invade our yard or the canal behind our home.

The last couple of years, he also got into a bad habit of peeing on rugs and in our downstairs shower. Not his finest moments and not ones we were happy with him doing, either.

rocko ottoman
taken on July 21, 2013

As with all cats, they take over all sorts of couches, blankets, rugs, beds, pillows… anything soft. Rocko was no exception, claiming this ottoman as his for the last four years of his life. While I wanted to get it back to use for my feet, I didn’t want it to be with him leaving us.

rocko circle kitty
taken on November 9, 2013

Rocko had dozens of other names that I labeled him with, mostly related to his actions. One of them was circle kitty, which I used to call him when he would go into a circle to sleep on the bed.

Last Days

rock deck 2014
taken on March 8, 2014

We knew the end was here when on Saturday, March 9th, he quit eating and not drinking water. He could barely stand up on his own. It was very sad to see.

rocko last photo
taken on March 9, 2014

For the next couple of days, we didn’t go anywhere and kept watch over him, trying to make his final hours comfortable. He passed away a little before 8pm on Monday, March 10th, with myself and Reba at his side.

We will miss our buddy and pal. He gave us over 20 years of happiness.


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