Miami fans use US flag to save cat that fell from upper deck of stadium

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — It’s a good thing cats have nine lives. And for one feline in South Florida, it was fortunate that two University of Miami fans bring a flag to every football game.

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Craig Cromer, a facilities manager at the university, and his wife, Kimberly Cromer, made a catch on Saturday night that certainly gave fans some pause.

That’s because a cat, which somehow managed to get into the upper deck at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, was hanging by its paws on the railing before falling, the Miami Herald reported. But the Cromers, who have been Hurricanes season ticket-holders for seven years, caught the falling, flailing feline in the flag.

It was “probably the strangest thing that’s happened,” Kimberly Cromer told the newspaper.

The bizarre sequence took place during the second quarter of Saturday’s game between the Hurricanes and Appalachian State, Sports Illustrated reported.

A murmur suddenly rose in the student section of the stadium as fans saw the cat dangling.

Craig Cromer ripped the flag, which hung on the railing in front of their seats, off its zip-ties, and he and his wife stretched out the flag to create a landing pad for the frightened feline, the Herald reported.

The couple stood and waited for about two or three minutes, while the unhappy cat urinated on the fans below.

“It seemed like it took forever,” Craig Cromer told the newspaper.

The crowd erupted in cheers -- ”This is my first catch,” Craig Cromer told the Herald -- and one student hoisted the cat into the air to show fans that the animal was OK.

Joe Zagacki, the Hurricanes’ play-by-play radio announcer for WQAM, provided a blow-by-blow description of the rescue.

“The cat was hanging from the upper deck by its claws,” Zagacki said on the air, never missing a beat. “Meanwhile, handoff, right side ...”

The cat quickly scampered away, and its whereabouts are unknown, the Herald reported. More than likely, it is not roaming around the upper deck again.