Wings of an Angel

The unexpected passing of Warren the bat.

In October, the Wisconsin Humane Society’s Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in Milwaukee marked the unexpected passing of Warren, a big brown bat who, after his rescue as a “young pup,” bonded so closely to a wildlife rehabilitator, Crystal Sharlow-Schaefer, “the apple of his tiny eye,” (seen below) that he rode around on her shoulder all day or in a small pouch that she carried with her. After an injury, Warren had lost the ability to communicate with his fellow bats, who are normally very social animals.

The star of many a nature presentation, Warren died unexpectedly of what the Society says was probably a “serious neurological episode.”

(Photos: Wisconsin Humane Society)

warren 1


Settling in to nosh on a meal worm.


Warren inside his sleeping pouch, where he returned to each night.



‘Wings of an Angel’ appears in the December 2015 issue of Milwaukee Magazine.

Find the December issue on newsstands Nov. 30.

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Matt has written for Milwaukee Magazine since 2006, when he was a lowly intern. Since then, he’s held the posts of assistant news editor and, most recently, senior editor. He’s lived in South Carolina, Tennessee, Connecticut, Iowa, and Indiana but mostly in Wisconsin. He wants to do more fishing but has a hard time finding worms. For the magazine, Matt has written about city government, schools, religion, coffee roasters and Congress.