The RAPS family is remembering one of our longest-serving and most devoted animal allies. Waldi Trotzki passed away July 3.
Waldi, along with wife Barbara, were among the founders of Richmond Homeless Cats, which became RAPS.
The couple were not even aware of that there were feral cats when they discovered a colony of cats living on the property of their boat-building company at Capstan Way and Number 3 Road. They learned that there was a group of folks informally trapping, neutering and releasing (TNR) cats in Richmond. (Before the opening of the RAPS Cat Sanctuary, TNR was the accepted model. It is not ideal, but it is an interim step that is better than unchecked breeding!)
That was more than three decades ago and the Trotzkis have been core volunteer members ever since. Most recently, they volunteered on evening shifts – one feeding the cats while the other scooped poop. (“We look after them from one end to the other!” said Barbara.)
Waldi was born in Berlin and came to Vancouver in 1954. He was a master craftsman and an entrepreneur. With Barbara and son Peter, Waldi built rowboats, sailing dinghies, speedboats and sailboats. When he wasn’t working or saving cats, Waldi was scuba diving or exploring the inlets up and down the West Coast. Skiing and motorcycle racing at Westwood were another passion.
We are deeply honoured that Waldi gave so much of his time and spirit to RAPS’ animals. He will always be remembered as a pioneer of the organization and a model of dedication.