Missing: "Ashes" a Russian blue cat disappeared during the house fire in the 7700 block of Monroe Street Dec. 31. (Courtesy Bonnie Cole)

The Cole family found a new Forest Park apartment after they were forced to evacuate from the greystone three-flat that burned for almost 12 hours, Dec. 30-31. But they are still missing a pet, said Bonnie Cole.

“We had two cats, one of which my daughter was able to find and rescue,” Cole wrote. “Another cat we were unable to rescue prior to being evacuated from our apartment,” she said.

The missing animal is a 12-year-old Russian blue named Ashes, Cole said.

The cat was adopted by Cole’s adult daughter from the Animal Care League in 2002, she said.

The Cole family, Bonnie and her husband and adult daughter and son, were evacuated from the second floor in the greystone around 11:30 p.m. as fire from the basement raged. 

Initial police reports indicated the fire may have started after a child was observed playing with a lighter and firecrackers in the basement. The stubborn blaze entered the building’s walls and rekindled several times overnight. More than 50 firefighters from around the area gathered to fight the fire until it was finally extinguished around noon the next day. The 1927 building was torn down the following week.

Bonnie Cole said her family had moved into a new apartment, Jan. 11, and received help from co-workers, family and friends.

If you know the cat’s whereabouts, please contact Bonnie Cole at 708-717-0226.

Jean Lotus

Jean Lotus loves community journalism. She covers news, features, two school boards, village council, crime, park district and writes obits for Forest Park Review. She also covers the police beat for...