via email from Betty Lulu:
Pepper (?1996 - 2012) was a stray whom I took in when I was in Texas. She was a small-sized cat with a gentle temperament. In this picture, she was in her thinner days. She was usually rounder in the face and rounder in general.
We went through a lot together. She traveled with me from Texas to the East Coast. Within a month, she stopped eating and developed hepatic lipidosis, where her liver cells started turning into fat cells. Survival was fifty-fifty, the vet said. Pepper underwent surgery to have a stomach tube inserted. I had to medicate her and feed her through a stomach tube three times a day. She recovered, but the inside end of the stomach tube was defective and didn't pass through her system. She had to undergo another surgery to have that piece of plastic removed. She recovered after a month, and was back at 100% health. I called her my $2,000 cat. (I briefly thought about suing the manufacturer of the defective stomach tube to recoup costs, but it wasn't worth it).
While Pepper was recovering, I adopted another cat, Creamsicle, to keep her company. His story will have to wait for another day.
Pepper died peacefully in the Midwest.
Thanks to everyone for your kind words of sympathy.