The TV weatherman teared up live on-air when addressing his recent loss and opened up about what his pet meant to him.
“My beloved Coco, my rescue cat, who we featured on the show for many years, sadly had to say goodbye on the weekend,” he said.
“It was extremely difficult, any pet lover or anyone who’s been through that knows how hard it is. They are family, they're more than just a cat or just a dog.”
Footage then started playing of Coco on the breakfast show, with Sam thanking his Sunrise family for being “such big supporters of her”.
“She’s had so many great moments on the show, we’ve given her a great life and so many experiences,” he continued.
“It’s real grief when you lose an animal and I’m still processing it, but I just wanted to say a big heartfelt thank you to literally tens of thousands of people who’ve reached out to me… It’s still hard to talk about.”
Sam added through tears that he had set up a GoFundMe page in Coco’s honour with the goal of raising $1000 for Sydney Dogs & Cats Home, and it has currently raised over $20,000.
“That will help other animals, that will help other people get to experience what I had with Coco, so thanks for getting behind it,” he said.
— Sunrise (@sunriseon7) April 5, 2022
Nat Barr’s heartbreaking news
Following Sam’s on-air tribute to Coco, Nat Barr shared her own heartbreaking news that her family cat had also recently passed away.
“It wasn’t a good week for cats, we had to put our own cat Flash down on Friday night,” she shared.
“She’s not as famous as Coco. She was 18, the kids had grown up with her.”
‘One of the worst days of my life’
Sam posted an emotional video on Instagram over the weekend announcing the news that Coco, who he had adopted from RSPCA in Perth over 13 years ago, had sadly passed away.
“Today’s been one of the worst days of my life,” he shared with tear-filled eyes. “I got home from Canada earlier this morning and when I opened the door, Coco was slumped over against the wall.
“Her legs weren't functioning, her eyes were closed. She was still breathing but she was in a really bad way. It was extremely confronting.”
Unfortunately, Coco was not responsive to any of the vet’s treatments and there was nothing that could be done to save her.
“It doesn't feel real,” he continued. “It f**king hurts. She's been such an important part of my life, a real shining light and one of the best things to ever happen to me.
"She's made me so happy. She's my best little buddy and she's always been there for the last 13 years.”
As well as making multiple appearances on Sunrise throughout her life, Coco featured on the cover of Sam’s 2021 memoir Accidental Weatherman and became the first cat to attend the Logie Awards in 2019.
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