Brave Cat Makes 5-Story Leap For His Life To Escape Burning Building

A cat trying to survive a Chicago building fire made a jump for his life that captivated the world.

Cats are masters of survival, enduring odds that would take out the toughest of humans. The black cat who made the leap in question proves the extreme skill and instinct that keeps felines alive in the grizzliest of situations.

Chicago Fire Media/Twitter

When a fire broke out inside the cat’s building, he must have seen no other option for escape and chose to leap from a five-story window he found open and venting smoke. A camera trained on the burning apartment caught the leap, revealing how the cat suddenly appeared, pausing only long enough to survey the scene below before bracing his paws and jumping.

Onlookers screamed and gasped as the cat fell through the air, adjusting his body for the landing. He hits the grass, bouncing on his paws. But does he pause? No, he runs away from the scene, seemingly no worse for the wear.

To get a better idea of how impressive the leap and the landing really were, Twitter user Peter Nosko shared a Google Maps Street View of the area.


At the time of the fire, department director Larry Langford told NBC News, “It went under my car and hid.” After a couple of minutes of collecting himself, the black cat “came out and tried to scale the wall to get back in.”

Langford reported the cat had no viewable injuries after escaping the fire.

Chicago Fire Media/Twitter

Family Found, Hennessy the Flying Cat Remains Missing

Efforts to locate the cat’s family were a success, Chicago Fire learning the cat’s identity to be Hennessy, a house cat who kept to the indoors.

A Twitter update further revealed, “Hennessy the flying cat has not returned home yet. Neighbors near 65th and Lowe are out looking for the now famous feline. His owner says he is a house cat that did not go out.  We will update if he is located.”

Letitia Brown, Hennessy’s mom, loves her precious cat, telling the Chicago Sun Times, “That’s my baby.” 

“He’s a maniac, very playful and very loving. He loves to play and snuggle. The best cat ever.”

Twitter users have offered tips on finding a lost cat, and hopefully, Hennessy will return home to his concerned family quickly. Neighbors are helping in the search.

“We’re hoping that he’ll just hear my voice and just run up to me,” said the worried cat mom. “It’s just very stressful. I’m just trying to keep my head up and look for my baby.”

Chicago Fire Media/Twitter

As for the building, the fire was kept to just the apartment and extinguished with no injuries reported.

To learn how cats make such impressive landings, check out How Do Cats (Almost) Always Manage To Land On Their Feet?

Feature Image: Chicago Fire Media/Twitter

Cat Living In Sewer Births Unusual Kitten, Vet Can’t Explain It
Puma Becomes Happy Housecat Because His Parents Give Him Their All
Fighting Dogs Told To Stay And Be Gentle As Tiny Kitten’s Placed Between Them
Rare Cat Born Without Sex Organs Finds Their Forever
At Almost 27 UK Feline Officially Takes The Title Of World’s Oldest Cat
Meet Fenrir, The World’s Tallest Living Cat & All-Around Handsome Gentleman