“Tell all your friends I’m kind.” That’s what 6-year-old Catherine Hubbard used to say to insects, in the hope that they would all feel welcome and safe, according to her mother, Jenny. The thoughtful, introspective redhead was one of the 26 children and educators tragically gunned down at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, in December.
To honor Catherine, PETA is inscribing a leaf on the Tree of Life monument at our Norfolk, Virginia, headquarters that reads:
IN LOVING MEMORY OF
CATHERINE VIOLET HUBBARD
FRIEND TO ALL ANIMALS
Catherine loved to watch baby birds in their nests and reveled in having butterflies land on her. She doted on her beloved rabbit, Flopsy, and would help her elderly, arthritis-stricken dog, Samantha, to her feet when she struggled. Before Catherine’s funeral, her parents asked that, in lieu of flowers, donations be made to The Animal Center in Newtown, an organization that rescues homeless animals and provides them with foster care. So far, more than $200,000 has been donated in Catherine’s name. Catherine had dreamed of establishing her own animal shelter one day, and The Animal Center plans to use the money raised in her name to build the Catherine Violet Hubbard Animal Sanctuary, where children can visit and learn about animals rescued from abusive situations.
Each of us can pay tribute to Catherine by trying to live like she would—by taking a stray cat to a shelter, stopping to help a turtle cross the road, or walking a neighbor’s dog. These are the kinds of things that Catherine would do if she were here—and the things she would teach others to do by her example.
PETA invites parents who want to raise compassionate kids like Catherine to visit PETAKids.com. And urge your kids to take a page from Catherine’s book and tell all their friends that they’re kind.