Lonely Planet Writer

Thousands attend funeral for stationmaster cat

About 3000 people attended a funeral for a cat at a railway station in Wakayama Prefecture, Japan, where the cat had been ‘stationmaster’ for the past eight years.

Tama the eternal stationmaster at Kishi station.
Tama the eternal stationmaster at Kishi station. Image by as365n2 / CC BY-SA 2.0

Tama, who wore a custom-made hat, has been credited with helping to save the local railway company, as her presence at the unmanned station drew visitors from across the country. The president of the railway said that Tama contributed an estimated $US 8.9 million to the local economy. Tama died from heart failure, aged 16, and has been given the title of ‘honourable eternal stationmaster’. Another cat, called Nitama, is in place as apprentice stationmaster. Read more: theguardian.com