Father Dies Trying To Save Puppy Stranded On Ice

A father died after falling through an icy pond while saving his family’s stranded puppy.

William Tuttle, 45, crawled across the frozen surface in Fountain, Colorado after fearing Brock was drowning.

But, just as he reached the dog, the ice gave way and the father-of-two plunged into the freezing water.

He had just enough time to throw the animal to the shore but rescuers took 90 minutes to get Mr Tuttle back on to dry land.

The victim, who had been walking alone with the dog, was rushed by ambulance to Memorial Hospital but died a short time later.

His distraught daughter Megan, 19, said her only comfort is that her father’s last words were to tell her he loved her.

‘I told him I love him too,’ she told KRDO News 13. ‘It’s so hard. He’s not here anymore. He was such a great man.

‘You would never see him without a smile on his face. He was always so happy. He would help anybody out if they needed it.’

His son Taylor, 16, said he was proud his father, adding: ‘He’s my angel right now. He is. It wasn’t stupid. He did what he had to do.’

It is not known whether Brock was let off his leash or simply slipped out of Mr Tuttle’s before dashing on to the thin ice.

The father’s first instinct was to save the animal, who had only been brought into the nearby family home three weeks ago.

Casey O’Malley, who was fishing at the Willow Springs Pond, told KKTV 11 News: ‘He got down on his hands and knees, and then walked out towards and to the dog.

‘At that point the owner did fall through the ice. He and the dog struggled for a second. The owner was able to get the dog up onto the ice.’

A woman who was close found a stick and tried to pull Mr Tuttle from the freezing water but was unable to free him as he frantically splashed about.

The alarm was raised and rescuers from the Fountain Fire Department eventually reached the victim and pulled him out.

Luckily a crew, who had already alerted about children on the ice, were half way to the pond when the 911 call was made, Fountain Fire Chief Darrin Anstine revealed.

But they were too late to save him.

Taylor says he is now concentrating on finishing high school and making his father proud when he graduates.


  1. Gigi says

    I find this terribly tragic.  Inasmuch as I would do as much as possible to save my dog, losing a human life, not to mention a loving father, is not worth it.  He is definitely a hero, but what a price to pay….  I pray his children feel his presence in everything they do. 

    • Tjbagley61 says

      So your saying what he did wasn’t worth it? Don’t think most would agree. He must have felt his puppy was worth risking his life. I would do the same for my animals no question…that’s the only unconditional love you’ll ever receive but I guess you can’t understand that since you thought that life of the puppy wasn’t worth it.

      • Sagebrush says

        > He must have felt his puppy was worth risking his life.

        Uh… no. Not worth risking his life.  If you had a chance to ask him if he was willing to lose his life, and forego another 40 years with his wife, children, and future grandchildren, or allow the dog to drown, I guarantee you he’d watch in horror… safely away from the ice.

        Since most of you are adults:

        If you ask your son and daughter if they had to select which would drown, their father or the dog, who do you think they would choose?
        Let me put it to you yet another way:

        (1) save the dog but watch your child drown in saving the dog
        (2) save the life of your child by not allowing them on the ice, but watch the dog drown

        Life lessons are a bitch.

        Gigi is right. 
        Tjbagley61 is a mental basketcase.
        Pick up another puppy at the humane society and save THAT one.

  2. says

    Gigi, he obviously thought he was not going to lose his life! 
    This inherently brave gentleman did what his first instinct’s were.  He crawled out there (and by the way Gigi he made his way out there correctly.  Crawling is the correct way to move across thin ice)to save a life, period.  Mr. Tuttle also obviously thought even a puppy’s life was worth the risk to his own.
    Mr. Tuttle…was a hero, period.

    • Carlisle Hall says

      Where was Mr. Tuttle’s concern for his family while he was crawling out onto the ice to save a dog? Why wasn’t he thinking about their welfare? Mr. Tuttle’s values were seriously misplaced.

  3. Westiechick2 says

    he is my hero as well,that what makes ppl human ,for some ppl it was a puppyfor this man it was much more,what a wonderful man he was,RIP 

  4. Tjbagley61 says

    God bless you sir, your an angel. So sorry that it ended the way it did, but God has a special place in heaven for people like you.

  5. Suezennefg says

      And what is anyone taking a puppy to anyplace they can get killed? I feel for this man and his family, he did what his heart told him to do….

  6. Becky says

    I am so sorry for that family’s loss. So sad. The guy was just doing what he thought was best. It would be hard to just sit there.

  7. Buff says

     Hi Tjbagley61,
    I know at least one kid who died trying to save his dogs from a fire. He said he would give his life up for a animal in nedd, he was only 14.
    I spoke to my son about this, he said on his own words. I preffer loosing you by saving a animals life than going to fight in a human war.  He knows I would do just the same, hopping all goes well, but if it didn´t at least, knowing I saved a life. So I do not agree with you. My son is not alone.

  8. Roastpuppy says

    Parents have an obligation to their children and that obligation includes avoiding unreasonable danger that will leave those children orphans. This man’s risking his life for the sake of a worthless fleabag has left his children without the financial and other support provided by a father and his wife without the financial and other support of a husband. He and those who applaud his actions have seriously misplaced values. No DOG is worth the life of a human being!

  9. says

    Tjbagley61: Unconditional love? Are you serious? Dogs do NOT give unconditional love, in fact, dogs do not LOVE at all. They do what is necessary to ensure their survival and if they happen to have an owner who requires them to dance around like idiots and wallow all over them, that’s what they do. If you believe your dog loves you unconditionally, have a neighbor start feeding it hamburger and steak instead of the processed dog food it gets at home and see how fast your “loyal companion” transfers all that “unconditional love” to the neighbor. There is nothing wrong with being fond of pets, but many pet owners today need to get a grip on reality and stop trying to “humanize” dogs and accept and treat them like the animals they are. And no one should EVER place their lives, or the lives of someone else, in jeopardy for the sake of a dog or any other animal! 

  10. says

    I did and always will save animals if they need, even if this costs my life. People who claims that dogs have no uncoditional love, have no clue about dogs and sad they dont open their eyes to such beauty. My compassion goes out to people who does not see the love dogs and other animals give. Beutiful act this man did. 

    • Carlisle Hall says

      “Unconditional love”? Dogs do not love at all, unconditionally, or otherwise. Dogs, like all animals, are survival-oriented and do whatever is necessary to be fed. If you think your dog loves you unconditionally, stop feeding it and have a neighbor start feeding it and see how fast your loyal, loving mutt transfers all that “love” to the neighbor. The very fact dogs can be passed from one owner to another and be just as loyal to next owner as to the last proves their only “love” is for the food bowl. If dogs were capable of “love,” there wouldn’t be any shelter dogs because they would all remain attached to their original owner. A person who would risk his/her live, or the life of another person, for the sake of a dog has seriously misplaced values. Where was William Tuttle’s “love” for his family when he was risking his life to save a dog? Who is going to support his family now? The dog?

      • BuffySammers says

        If this is how you see it, that is how it is. The ignorance of some humans goes real far, they even do not know the difference between a chair and an animal. Considering animals things :-( Animals, includes humans. We are animals too!!! If your thoughts are right than dear lord, help humans, because what we do to each other and still believe we got awareness love and compassion, is for me scary. I believe all living beings are able to feel and think and are aware. They all got the right to live and be protected. I am happy with how I feel and see the world. Sad that there are people who thinks that humans are the only species that are able to feel, very arrogant. Last thing for me is, if you can´t see how unconditional love is, than how will you know how it looks like. Dogs are love, they are only love. This will never change for me. Dogs are risking their lives quite often for people they even do not know. Going inside burning houses and saving entire families of humans. Saving people with illness because they are so much more involved than us they can even smell cancer and other illnesses before we can see it. Just look on the net and you will find plenty of rescues done by animals, that are not trained to do so. The least we can do for them is to give back and be there if they need us. This is what compassion and unconditional love is about, the way you write it comes across that you lack on this field. Because compassion has no rules or form. I would not trust my life on the hands of someone with so little compassion for other living beings. I trust much more a animals than an human. I am sad for this, but this is how it is. Should be like this? No, but it is and I am not alone in feeling like this. I am happy there are people who don´t see the world in one color and are open. Be happy Carlisle and I hope for you that your life never depends on a animal saving you, this would be a shock to your system.

      • BuffySammers says

        One tiny thing, dogs will stand by the grave of their owners and not eat. Some are even known to have died from this. My dog dont eat if I am gone and anyone can offer food, they wont eat. I know other dogs like this. So inform yourself before talking like this. Even science is starting to accept that animals got awareness and can feel, University of Cambridge is only one of many who brought studies out into the open, now I do not need this kind of studies to know they got feelings, but to those who do, is an interesting study. Sadly I don´t have the links for this anymore is old news. I moved on. For those will not believe, they even don´t believe they are alive. Dogs live on the moment, which humans should learn to do. They don´t ever forget their past owners actually many live a life in misery after losing their owners. By the way, you can say the same to humans, how many people re-marry. Even though they claimed to love their last partners? how many kids get adopted never to look back at their real parents? How many kids treats their parents badly and don´t feel sorry? Seriously look around the human species even worse things happening. Because in your eyes humans got unconditional love, but oh my look around you. Really are you sure???? I think some do have and others don´t. Who will support the family of a soldier who killed himself on a senseless war???? But this is ok, To lose the life like that is ok, but by saving the live of a puppy is not. Sad!!!!

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