We have some terrible news to pass along today, as we can report the internet sensation known as Grumpy Cat has sadly passed away. On the 7-year-old feline's official Twitter account, a post from her human family states Grumpy died due to complications from a recent urinary tract infection, despite the best efforts of top professionals. According to the post, the cat died at home on Tuesday morning "in the arms of her mommy, Tabatha." Referring to the kitty as their "baby and a cherished member of the family," Grumpy's owners say her spirit will live on through her fans.
Before rising to viral fame, Grumpy Cat was an ordinary feline named Tardar Sauce from Morristown, Arizona. Based on her permanently "grumpy" appearance, which is the result of feline dwarfism and an underbite, Grumpy first went viral in 2012 when a photo of her was posted on Reddit. Her likeness was then used by internet users across the world to create countless cynical memes. One commonly shared example has Grumpy changing the opening of the "Jingle Bells" Christmas song to "Dashing through the NO," which gets a lot of shares on social media every holiday season. Still, despite being used to represent bitterness, Grumpy was clearly a very relaxed and sweet cat, which could be seen in all of her many TV spots and interviews with her owner.
Grumpy's fame grew to point where the cat was even given her own movie. In 2014, Lifetime produced the holiday movie Grumpy Cat's Worst Christmas Ever, which aired on the network later that year. Aubrey Plaza (Parks and Rec, Child's Play) voiced the titular internet star in addition to producing the movie, with Tim Hill (The Spongebob Squarepants Movie) directing. Megan Charpentier (Resident Evil: Retribution) co-stars as Chrystal, a 12-year-old girl who meets Grumpy Cat at the local mall and is surprised to learn she can communicate with the cat. Voice actor Stephen Stanton also stars as the voice of a kidnapped Leonberger dog whom Grumpy and Chrystal are tasked with rescuing.
During her short life, Grumpy had achieved many impressive accolades beyond getting her own TV movie. In 2012, she was named by MSNBC as the year's most influential cat. She won Buzzfeed's Meme of the Year Award at the 2013 Webby Awards, later winning People's Voice Award in the Social Content and Marketing - Animals Category at the 2015 Webbys. She also won the Golden Kitty at the second annual Internet Cat Video Film Festival, and is also one of very few non-humans to be given a signature stipple portrait from the Wall Street Journal. Grumpy has even gotten a Lifetime Achievement Award, which was given to her by Friskies when she was just a year old.
As one of the most well-known felines in history, Grumpy Cat will be remembered for many years to come. Despite her "angry" gimmick, the cat brought joy to millions of people across the world. Grumpy Cat will definitely be missed, however, her family will undoubtedly miss her most of all. You can take a look at the announcement of the cat's passing below from her official account on Twitter.