Ill teenager misses her family cat, so the internet builds her a virtual cathedral of felines

Because of her weakened immune system, 16-year-old cancer patient Maga Barzallo Sockemtickem has spent many months over the past year recovering in isolation at the Seattle Children's Hospital. While waiting for a suitable bone marrow donor and receiving subsequent treatments, Maga found herself missing her beloved cat Merry.


The hospital stepped in and created "The Cat Immersion Project" for Maga, which allowed her to meet thousands of cats from all around the internet from her hospital bed. It's absolutely heartwarming, even if you happen to be allergic or feline averse.

To help Maga through this trying time, the Seattle staff first crowdsourced approximately 3,000 cat photographs through their Facebook page. The staff then built the immersion chamber in her room and projected this sizable army of cats above her bed. A grateful Maga had this to say to those pet owners who volunteered their kittens for this "virtual feline cocoon":

You guys remind me that there is so much good in the world, and its just makes me feel so much better, and connected. I can't tell you how it feels sometimes, feeling disconnected and cut off from the world, and then with something like cat pictures bringing me back.


We at io9 wish Maga a speedy, uncomplicated recovery and impart a collective pat on the back to the Seattle staff and an avuncular "Good hustle, internet" to all of the cat photo donors out there.

[CBS via Geekologie]

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Loquacious of Borg

Sweet story. I hope this encourages more people to sign up for the Bone Marrow Registry (and cat stuff)!