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Washington Township, NJ, Police Rescues Elderly Dog From 6-Foot-Deep Ditch

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By Vanesse Vera Roman for

WASHINGTON TWP. —Robert Lackey really loves animals. Dogs are his favorite animal, horses his second favorite, he said. He’s minded his neighbors’ cat while they’ve been away, and he’s taken care of his great nephew’s black lab, Charlie, too.

This week, Lackey, 80 — who splits his time between an apartment in New York City and his home in Washington Township — was dog sitting 14-year-old Charlie when things took an unexpected and somewhat frightening turn.

On Monday morning, Lackey was cleaning up after Charlie outdoors when he turned around and realized the dog was gone.

He looked a bit further and found that Charlie, a heavy dog with a bad back, had fallen into a 6-foot deep streambed along the side of Sand Hill Road.

There was only about an inch of water in the stream but the deep banks are steep. Unable to get the dog out himself, Lackey called police.

Shortly after 10:30 a.m., Washington Township Police Officer John Wurtemberg responded to the scene, got into the ditch, and was able to hoist the dog out and return it to Lackey.

Charlie was dirty because of the heavy rain and mud, but, Lackey said, the dog is now home resting comfortably.

“Thank God for the Washington Township Police Department,” Lackey said. “They’re there when you need them.”

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12 years ago

it’s refreshing to hear a warm-hearted story.


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