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More happy endings

It was a simple story and one that would hardly be a contender for the nightly news, but the story this week about a Chuckatuck family’s lost dog being found and returned to them by a city employee says a lot about the fine people who work behind the scenes to make Suffolk feel like a hometown and not just the city where we live.

The Creekmore family’s 1-year-old Dalmatian and husky ran out of the house at 5 a.m. on Oct. 21. It’s a scene many of us have experienced, and for dog lovers, it’s one that distills some of their greatest fears into one terrible moment.

The Creekmores were soon able to retrieve their husky, but the Dalmatian, Blair, was gone. They commenced a response that many pet owners will recognize: They posted something to Facebook about the lost pet, they put up more than 100 fliers around the area, and they drove countless miles between Suffolk, Chesapeake and even Newport News. In desperation, they checked the animal shelters in each of those cities, hoping against hope that their beloved dog had been found and turned in. Then they prayed — and cried.

A week later, there was still no word about Blair. Things seemed bleak, indeed. But then, on Sunday, they got a call from Bob Spain, and the story pivoted toward a happy — and, perhaps, unexpected — ending.

Spain is a park attendant at Lone Star Lakes Park. He had seen the fliers posted around Chuckatuck and probably thought the same thing most of us would have thought — poor family; I hope the dog’s OK.

He was working to clear some fallen trees around the park on Sunday when everything came together. He spotted Blair down by the pump station, recognized the dog from the fliers and tried to catch her to get her out of the rain.

“It was hectic,” he said this week. “You’re trying to catch a dog in the pouring-down rain, and the dog was scared to death.”

Finally he called the Creekmores and asked them to come and help. They, of course, were thrilled and hurried to the park to do whatever they could to get Blair back. Fortunately they brought along their other Dalmatian, because Blair was scared by all the humans bustling about, and it was only the appearance of her canine friend that finally coaxed her into the car.

Dog and family were reunited — not a big deal as far as news goes, but a huge thing for the participants. And the reunion likely would not have happened if it hadn’t been for a city employee going out of his way to do something good.

We should see more such stories in the news. The world needs more happy endings.