A hospitalized woman asked a nurse to check on her pets, to make sure they were fed.
And thus began Deltona Animal Control Case No. AC2010-02283, a case that has stirred passions, brought a city's pet-population problems into focus and moved those involved to dig into their own pockets to help a dying woman and her cats -- many of whom also have died.
On a hot day in June, the nurse arrived at the house on Outlook Drive, and heard the cries of kittens. Unsure, she called a friend who had previously been involved in cat rescues, and the two entered.
The rescuer, Jan Sanders, later said in an e-mail to Deltona Animal Control officials she was "awestruck to the condition and smell of this home. Then I located the kittens and my heart broke from that moment. Innocent little beings."
Sanders described the home: no electricity or water. "Very hot and filled with junk. No refrigerator or stove. A fire hazard. I slipped a few times on the urine on the floor from the dog."..." More