A donation was made in memory of Contessa on Mar 26, 2010.

On a bitterly cold and windy night in February 1993 on San Juan Island, the “Barefoot Contessa” peered into our living room window, and that one look ended our “catless” existence. Tessa was also pregnant and soon presented us with four very beautiful kittens. She was the best mother – teaching her kittens to use the litter box and taking them into the forest to hunt and learn the ways of the wild. She continued to educate them for three months when two left for a home with another family. She passed away on March 24, 2010, on San Juan Island, where she was born 18 ½ years ago. William (of Orange), her only boy, died in 2008 and her daughter Nefertari died in 2007. She outlived her other two daughters as well.

Although Tessa was an excellent mother, she never lost her own kitten ways. She loved to run, climb trees and explore her world. Tessa was small at just 6 pounds, but when she chased foxes or raccoons (she once jumped on the back of one when it was too close to her kittens), she was a giant. Everyone who had the honor of knowing “her majesty” commented on the fact that she had many strong opinions and desires and was not bashful about letting you know vocally what she thought. She enjoyed long walks with her human and feline family. She once spotted an eagle overhead and warned her children to run into the woods for safety. She could leap from the railing to the roof of the house (about 6 feet straight up) without any effort. She split her time between her houseboat home in the Seattle and her country home on the island. She was also a good swimmer and an ice skater (we do not know why, but running and sliding on the frozen lake was fun). It is very hard for us to imagine a world that does not include Tessa. She lived a long and happy life and will be missed by her family forever.


Andrea W. & Tim E.

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Additional donations made in Contessa's name

  • Anne Kazen – 3/27/2010
    Comments: A spirited and joy filled life, leaves no regrets. We'd like to believe they will be with us forever, but in our hearts they are. We are so sorry to hear that Tessa has passed. I'm sure she is so thankful for all your love and special care over the many years you shared with her. What a life she had! Love, Anne