Basil the NC Greenhouse cat poses with keychains in his likeness which are now for sale to support a bursary in his name.
After a brief illness, Basil, the lovable tabby cat who called NC’s Greenhouse home, passed away July 3.
An official NC employee, Basil had been chief of natural pest control in the greenhouse since coming to college in 2003, earning his moniker through a naming contest held by Greenhouse staff. The stray tabby made the Niagara-on-the-Lake campus home, where he quickly attracted the attention, love and care of the entire college community.
In the over 15 years of Basil’s time with Niagara College, he was not only a fearless mouser, keeping the greenhouse pest-free, but was also a constant source of encouragement and stress relief for students, staff and visitors alike. Basil received regular checkups and visits to the vet, and was well cared-for by Greenhouse staff and many others, including president Dan Patterson and his wife Saundra, who took great delight in him.
His contributions to the college community were immortalized in July 2018, when he left his paw-prints in a new concrete path connecting the greenhouse to Benchmark Restaurant, where he could often be glimpsed welcoming restaurant guests. Basil also had an Instagram account, where he shared uplifting photos with the college community, and starred in several NC holiday videos in past years. Watch them here, and here.
In 2016, a new Basil Bursary was created in Basil’s honour. Plush keychains in his likeness were created, and are still for sale at Benchmarket at the NOTL Campus. All funds raised through the sale of the keychains go toward a $500 bursary for students. Donations to the Basil Bursary can also be made directly online, by visiting donate.niagaracollege.ca/ways-to-give/ and clicking ‘Online Donation.’
Those who encountered Basil are encouraged to share their memories of him on social media, tagging his Instagram account, @Basil_theNCcat. Donations can also be made directly to the Basil Bursary online, at donate.niagaracollege.ca/ways-to-give/ .
(Source: InsideNC, a Niagara College publication)