Station cat promoted
Tama-chan, the cat stationmaster of a rural Japan train station, has attained the position of Operating Officer.
The stray cat was found in front of Kishi Station on the Wakayama Electric Railway Co. Kishikawa Line in 2007. Named Tama-chan, the kitty was offered the position of Stationmaster and held that post from 2007 until being promoted to Super Station Master in April 2008.
With the appointment as corporate executive Tama-chan becomes the first cat in the world to hold an executive post of a railroad corporation, a company official said.
Tama-chan, 10, will continue to perform stationmaster duties in addition to its responsibilities as Operating Officer. Those additional duties have not yet been determined.
The cat is responsible for an increase in passenger numbers. The company plans to rebuild Kishi Station into the shape of a cat’s face this summer.
Station dog cremated
Maron, the 9-year-old Yorkshire terrier stationmaster for the Iwate Galaxy Railway Company died the evening of August 29, 2009. The cause of death was bronchitis. The dog had served as Station Chief at Oku-Nakayama Kogen Station, in Ichinohemachi since September, 2000. A funeral service for Maron was held on September 12, 2009.
With Tama-chan promoted, and Maron out of the way, cats are poised to pounce on stations throughout Japan. Cat-blogger and star of the Wii game Sukeban Shachou Rena Wii, "Rena" is likely to take over the position formerly held by Maron. Rena is currently CEO of Cat Queen Inc.
It is rumored CQI is a subsidiary of Virtucon Corporation. Following the mysterious disappearance of CEO "Number 2", leadership of Virtucon was assumed by "Mr. Wigglesworth". Police suspect Wigglesworth was involved in the Number 2 case and the sudden death of Maron. Police also link Wigglesworth to the quick promotion of Tama-chan. "We believe this Mr. Wigglesworth cat is the mastermind of these plots," said one police official.
Station employees had originally protested the latest promotion of Tama-Chan, but they denied they were threatened. "A hairless cat wearing a thick leather collar and flu mask did come to see us late one night after the last train had passed", said one employee who refused to be identified. "But the feline was very polite and did not hiss or scratch us," the employee said.
Police continue to investigate possible foul play among the cats. "It is highly unusual to reach a management position in such a short time. Especially for a cat," the police official said.
Virtucon Corporation did not respond to inquiries. In addition to assigning cats to oversee train stations in Japan, it is believed Virtucon Corporation desires to take over the world.