The heroic puppy rescue at White Rock was the feel-good neighborhood story of the past few days, but the initial hero received no recognition …
In the past few days, several publications and blogs picked up the heartwarming Morning News story about Animal Control Officer Lee Pogue who rescued a painfully adorable puppy from drowning in the murky waters of White Rock Lake.
From the Observer’s “Drowning Dog Rescued by Fast-Thinking Animal Control Officer” post:
“… It seemed as if the poor, struggling creature was condemned to a watery grave … Not on Pogue’s watch. He talked the nearby canoe-rental guy out of one of his vessels, then quickly paddled to the dog’s rescue. Pogue and the animal returned to shore safely.”
Mr. Pogue did a fine job and seems like a sweet man — he calmed the pup and nicknamed her Josephine and all. However, according to witnesses, White Rock Paddle Co. employee Benjamin Magill (a young Eagle Scout and White Rock area resident) saved the dog before animal services arrived.
According to Magill’s aunt, Amie Deregge, her nephew is the aforementioned canoe rental guy and he already had paddled to the dog’s rescue (and through those unusually heavy currents the News story mentions, no less), but the animal control officer hollered at him to not touch the animal (which does make sense, considering the little pup was terrified and likely in a snipping mood). Benjamin, being an obviously awesome kid and all, listened to the man in uniform.
This pic, according to Deregge’s sister in law, Benjamin’s mom, was taken before animal control arrived and commandeered Ben’s boat.
Not to throw a Debbie Downer wrench into the animal-control-officer-as-hero-story works, however, as that particular narrative goes semi viral it only seems fair to praise the ‘fast-thinking’ teen who initiated the rescue efforts, no? And while we’re cheering the puppy savers — how ’bout those White Rock Paddle peeps for being out there with those life-saving vessels in the first place.
Extra bit of trivia: Benjamin also is the nephew of Home By Hovercraft husband-and-wife duo Seth and Shawn Magill.