The Piermont Fire Department dive team is trained to save the lives of people who may be in danger on the mighty Hudson. But this weekend proved that no life is too small for them to save, and no body of water too small, either.
At 4 p.m. on Sunday, December 18, an elderly miniature pinscher named Spencer fell from his owner’s backyard wall onto the frozen Sparkill Creek. As if that weren’t bad enough, the tiny dog’s attempts to rescue himself made him break through the ice more than once.
With help from neighbors, the fire department was called and the dive team was dispatched. According to Piermont Fire Chief Daniel Goswick, EMT Candace Goswick climbed down a ladder onto the ice. By distributing her weight evenly, Candace was able to get to Spencer and carry him to safety.
Despite falling a few feet from the creek wall onto the ice, and being soaked by ice-cold water, the partially blind and deaf Spencer – whose age is estimated at 14 – was doing fine by the evening, said his owners, Treavor Hastings and Nick Predescu.
“We’d like to publicly thank EMT Candace Goswick for climbing out onto thin ice to rescue our little Spencer yesterday,” Hastings said Monday in a Facebook post. “Candace and the Piermont Fire and Police Departments have helped make this a very merry Christmas, indeed. There aren’t enough words to adequately express our gratitude for your bravery and kindness.”
This is the second time Spencer has dodged the Grim Reaper. He was rescued by a friend of the couple in 2005, after the pup was found wandering the streets of Brooklyn with a dislocated hip.
“The friend who rescued him did not want a pet, and he came into our lives days later… lucky us!” Hastings said.