THANKS TO Judy Bond of Cockeysville, an affectionate yellow and white cat is alive and well.
Bond found him by the side of the road. His jaw had been fractured in three places and his tongue was almost severed. One of his eyes was bruised and closed and he was bleeding internally.
It was 6:30 on the morning of Oct. 22, and she saw a cat on the shoulder of Falls Road just north of Cross Keys. Her husband, Howard, a Johns Hopkins University astronomer involved with the space telescope, had a plane to catch, and they couldn't stop. She didn't think it was alive.
''I dropped Howard off and . . . came back to the cat, picked him up and put him in the trunk because it was roomy, had air and he was bleeding badly. I drove him to the Falls Road Animal Hospital and was lucky to find Dr. Kim Hammond in his office at that hour of the morning. I left Chester there, not believing he could make it,'' says Bond, who was on her way to Overlea High School where she teaches in the physics department.
After a hospital stay of five days, Chester went home with Bond. ''He didn't question my intentions. Chester is full grown but not much more than a year old. He is large, thin, has a strong constitution and a very laid back and affectionate nature. When I went in to get him, the veterinarian put him up on the table and he walked over and rubbed against me and purred as if he knew he belonged to me although I hadn't seen him for more than five minutes prior to that moment,'' she says.
She says Chester ''must have suffered a great deal because Hammond said he couldn't give him anything for pain for about 24 hours after the operation. Yet Chester snapped back from it all very quickly. He does seem to drink more water than most cats. At first we noticed blood in his urine but think it might have been the large doses of antibiotics, which he is off of now.''
The name Chester just developed when the name Garfield didn't fit. ''We wanted to call him Garfield because he is such a large cat, but he is far too thin to be a Garfield so we just took the name Chester, who is the character in the vampire bunny book entitled 'Bunnicula.'"
At his new home, Chester recuperated quietly for a few days but soon was up and about. ''Last week he really came back to normal. He plays with Arthur [the Bonds' 8-year-old son], who will throw a ball for him and Chester slaps it and chases it."
The family also owns Beany, a solid black 12-year-old cat they adopted as a kitten in Baton Rouge, La., where the couple lived for 17 years while Howard, who is from Bethesda, taught at LSU. Judy Bond has roots in the Boston area.
Bond would like to find Chester's owner but will not give him up unless she is positive he belongs to someone who wanted him in the first place.