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Missing dog returned to college student

POSTED November 3, 2011 4:11 p.m.
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CLAFLIN — Twenty-three -year-old Fort Hays State University student Jessica Thayer and her dog Addie, were heading back to Fort Hays after spending a few days with family in her hometown of Wichita early in the morning on Oct. 28.

Heading west on U.S. Highway 4 from Claflin, near the big hill, a deer ran across the road. Swerving to avoid a second deer, at around 2:30 a.m. in the morning, she overcorrected, and the vehicle rolled at least once.

Fortunately, Thayer was wearing her seat belt, and the airbag deployed. Although the engine was still running, Jessica could smell dirt and oil, and turned off the engine. She could not open her door, so she crawled out the passenger door.

Although she was shaken, Jessica thought she was okay.

"Once my eyes adjusted, I couldn’t find my phone or flashlight," Jessica said. She couldn’t find her dog Addie, either. "I couldn’t figure if she went out the window. She disappeared."

Jessica began walking to the nearest house. She ran across her book bag and her laptop, and carried them with her. The first house she went to was empty, and so she continued.

One-quarter to a half-a-mile later, Jessica came to the home of MaryLyne and Lee Grandclair. Lee answered the pounding on the door at 3 a.m. and the family invited her in. They called the police and EMTs for Jessica and then visited with her until they arrive.

"She was really worried her dog was injured or died," said MaryLyne.

After finding out that Jessica had only a scratch, she and the sheriff’s officer went to look for Addie, but had no success.

The Grandclairs told the FHSU student they’d keep an eye out for her dog.

After her parent’s arrived, they got the student’s personal belongings from the wrecked car and went to look for Addie again. Jessica arrived back in Hays on Saturday evening, but her apartment was empty with no Addie. "I kept seeing reminders of her," said Jessica. "I prayed she ended up with a good family."

On Sunday morning, there was a picture of Addie and a story in the Great Bend Tribune. At about 10:14 a.m., Jessica began getting calls that her dog had been spotted.

"I was excited and relieved," said the FHSU senior. "I was glad she had been spotted."

Jessica head back to the Claflin area at about 1:30 p.m. and drove around for four hours looking for the dog, again with no success.

Later that evening, Jessica received a call from Gail Schultz near Odin. She had seen Addie in a field by some hay bales. Unable to get her to come near, Schultz went home and got some dog food, returning with her husband. They were able to get Addie into the car.

Jessica, who had returned to FHSU, drove back to Odin, and the dog was reunited with her owner.

Jessica was appreciative of the help she received from strangers. "Everyone has been so helpful. Everyone has been so kind," she said. She was thankful to the small community that helped her out in her time of need.

"Somebody was watching out for me," she said.

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