These touching photographs capture the moment a 103-year-old woman received the nicest birthday present she could have wished for.
Lillian Grant was given so much more than a surprise celebration when she turned 103 years old.
Lillian lives in assisted living apartments in St. George, Utah, and her birthday was celebrated with an outdoor barbecue.
When one of the administrators, Debbie Presland, asked her what she wanted for her birthday, she said, “A sweet kitty like Sammy.”
Lillian’s favorite cat, Sammy, had cruelly passed away just over a year earlier, leaving her heartbroken.
After hearing this, Debbie resolved to do everything she could to grant Lillian’s dream. So she enlisted her brother Joseph’s assistance in finding a feline companion.
He works at the St George Animal Shelter, and the shelter soon presented him with a 9-year-old kitten named Marley.
He’d just arrived at the shelter after his previous owner had to give him up when she relocated into another assisted care home where pets were not permitted.
“We wanted to make sure everything worked out flawlessly,” Joseph explained. “We would’ve tried another cat if, Grant and Marley, hadn’t clicked.”
So, just before bringing out her birthday cake, Debbie informed Lillian that she was in for a special treat. They presented her with Marley and Lily and immediately cuddled her. “The cat was immediately attracted to her,” Joseph continued.
Lillian had no idea what was going on at first, thinking Marley was just paying her a visit for her birthday party. Lillian couldn’t believe it when Debbie leaned in and told her that Marley was now her cat; she couldn’t believe it.
The two of them clicked right away and are now inseparable. Lillian now refers to her new closest friend as Marley Sammy, after her beloved cat.
Debbie is overjoyed to have been able to provide Lillian with this wonderful beam of sunshine that has improved her life. She stated, “Just seeing her reaction choked me up.” “My eyes welled up with tears. It was quite sweet.”
Debbie, Lillian, Marley, and her brother Joseph are pictured here: