, Gloucester, MA

October 9, 2013

Letter: Thanks, Gloucester, for being what you are

Gloucester Daily Times

---- — To the editor:

On Saturday, Oct. 5, my family was reminded of why we live in Gloucester.

That evening we were walking our dogs on St. Anthony’s Lane before heading out for an evening full of hockey games and teen driving. Our energetic and adorable dog, Cooper, broke away from us and tore up the street, leash and all, and disappeared right in front of us, into the woods, and into the night.

After hours of looking, we knew we needed help. So began our journey through the agencies and networks of Gloucester. Social Media postings, flyers in mailboxes, stopping runners and walkers began.

We called police every shift for three days; they were very responsive and kind. Our city’s animal control officer assisted. The Cape Ann Animal Aid was on high alert.

From East Main Street’s Last Stop to the Richdales, folks were all checking in about Cooper. We hit the streets, knocking on doors, stopping walkers and runners, asking anyone to read our information and to listen and look for our family member.

Facebook went viral, so did Twitter and GoodMorningGloucester. We kept things updated with leads. But three nights later, we were all getting desperate. Then it happened. Neighbors showed up at our house.

They’d heard a dog crying in the woods. Another had learned about Cooper and called animal control with the same message. My husband and Jamie Levie headed into the woods. Then my phone rang.

“We have him Ally! We have him! He seems fine.”

Cooper’s leash was wrapped around a pallet; he was thirsty and hungry, but amazingly fine. I called all the folks who’d helped. I posted a “Happy Endings Story” on Facebook. Everyone from our vet to friends and neighbors laughed, loving the happy ending. I called the Last Stop and heard cheers. I felt the joy from all who sent messages.

I have to thank Carolyn Kirk, my dear friend, for helping, too. I’m glad I encountered my neighbor, Kathy Clancy, thank you for your advice. A special-shout out to a guy named Miles who I met on this journey.

A new neighbor, Miles also has a dog named Cooper; he and his brothers went out to the woods to look for our Cooper. Mile’s mom thought she spotted our pooch and probably was late for work looking for him.

When Miles went on the road, we texted and talked. Late Monday night, Miles said “I just know we are going to find him, Ally.” The next morning, we did. Super Duper Cooper was home at last.

Today, we are reminded about the power of asking for help, and I am humbled, and I am reminded of why we live in Gloucester.

Thank you Gloucester, for being who we are. And now, I think the two Coopers of Grapevine Road are off for a long walk on Good Harbor Beach.