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Friday, February 22, 2008

Three die trying to save their dogs

Authorities yesterday recovered the body of a 42-year-old Berkeley woman who was swept out to sea Saturday when she jumped into the ocean to try to save her dog on California’s Sonoma coast -- one of at least three such deaths in recent weeks.

According to a San Francisco Chronicle story, witnesses saw the woman, identified by the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Department as Molly Keane, go into the water near the Sonoma-Mendocino County line. The body of her dog was later found washed up on the beach. Keane's death was the second fatality in five weeks of a would-be dog rescuer swept off the Sonoma coast.

On Jan. 12, 19-year-old Ann Madden of Petaluma and her fiance were walking along an overlook at Portuguese Beach with their two dogs when large waves engulfed the two animals. Her fiance jumped in to rescue the dogs, followed by Madden.

"What she did was very, very heroic, but that’s the kind of person she was. We’re not surprised at all that she jumped in to save her fiance or the dogs," her mother said in an article in the Reading Eagle. Madden's fiance and two dogs survived.

In Buffalo, N.Y., police believe Anthony Dashner, a 51-year-old corrections officer, was trying to retrieve his parents' dog when he fell through the ice on the Buffalo River and died. Police pulled his body from the river Saturday afternoon, an article in the Buffalo News reported.

Dashner was last seen Wednesday morning, when he left his home to look for his parents' dog. Police believe Dashner was following the dog when he broke through the ice. Dashner worked at the medium-security Gowanda prison in southern Erie County.

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