Romy McCloskey / Facebook

Romy McCloskey has loved butterflies for as long as she can remember.

But the beautiful animal became particularly special to McCloskey after her mother died. The costume designer told BuzzFeed News:

Before she died, my mother said to me 'Romy, whenever you see a butterfly, know that I'm there with you and that I love you'.

When the Texas resident discovered caterpillars in her garden, she started to catch a few of them and fed them until they transformed into monarch butterflies, before releasing them.

Earlier this month, McCloskey noticed that one was born with torn upper and lower wings that could never fly on its own.

Butterflies can get injured while forming cocoons as caterpillars.

Determined to help the three-day-old male, she set up an operating room, full of the tools she uses as a costume designer.

McCloskey used the wings from one of her butterflies that had sadly passed a few days before, but she said the surgery meant the "wonderful gift of flight" could be passed on.

Her DIY operation required some impressive inventiveness.

As delicately as possible, McCloskey cut the damaged wing off and glued the transplant wing into place with contact cement, adding talcum powder to prevent too much stickiness.

This might sounds painful, but it feels similar to getting a haircut to the butterfly.

Remarkably, it worked - and the butterfly was able to fly away.


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