Griffin's Gift

As some of you may know my brother Danny, and sister in law Audrey and their two dogs, Sir and Griffin, were in an accident on 11-14-14. They were headed to Michigan from Colorado when they hit black ice and rolled their truck. When Danny went to check on Audrey one of their dogs, Griffin got out and went running down the highway. Danny ran after him for about two miles and lost him in the fields. They spent 13 hours looking for him Friday with no luck. Audrey got lost in the woods and fell into a creek. She was soaked from head to toe. She walked for miles before a couple of ladies picked her up. She was frozen, and after 4 hours the police found her at the ladies home. My dad made them come home to Michigan Friday night. I, Tristan took Audrey and my other sister in law, Skye back down to Indiana on Saturday where we met wonderful people who were also helping us look for Griffin. We spent all day Saturday looking for Griff. What some of you may or may not know, Griffin is my brothers Therapy Dog. He is in the United States Air Force, his dogs are his world. Griffin was on news stations, radio stations, flyers posted everywhere in La Porte and Michigan City. We had search parties and facebook searches. We had to get a hotel room Saturday and went out again first thing Sunday morning. My brother Danny, and other brother Zack came up with Sir to help with the search and still all day Sunday our search came up empty. Skye and I had to head home Sunday because I had to work Monday, but on our way we got a phone call saying a gentleman spotted Griffin on the side of the highway near the accident site but would not come to him. I contacted my brothers and Audrey who were already in route. Still, I headed home hoping when Griffin saw his family and his brother Sir, he would no doubt come running. I was wrong. About 20 mins later I called my brother Zack to see if they had gotten Griffin, but he was scared and ran from them too. By this time it was dark and Danny took Sir in one direction and Zack and Audrey went another in hopes of finding Griffin. Danny finally spotted him but he ran across six lanes of highway traffic, Danny did not want to take Sir across so he tied him to the fence about 50  yards off the highway on the side of the field. But Sir, being the loyal companion he is saw his owner run across the road yelling for Audrey knew something was wrong. So he slipped out of his collar and jumped the fence and chased after Danny. He got to the median and did not see Danny so he went to run back across the highway, where tragically he was hit and killed by a car. The driver did not stop, Zack and Audrey were running to the highway at this point and saw Sir laying lifeless on the side of the road. Witnesses stopped and tried to help, but he was gone. Danny came back about 20 minutes later to find his wife holding Sir's body in her lap. Things just went from bad to worse, they have a lost dog and now their other one was gone. To top it all off a young girl hit the cement median and flew back into on coming traffic where a Semi truck hit her, right in front of them. Police were already on scene helping but could not get the girl out of the car. So, Danny being the soldier that he is went over with his pocket knife and broke her back window open, threw his coat over the girl and told her he was going to break her window to get her out, and to keep the jacket over her face. He did just that, unlocked her door, ripped the door open and carried her out. He placed the girl in his rental truck and asked her questions to see her state of mind. Luckily, the girl was going to be ok, and was taken off to the hospital. Skye and I were headed back to Indiana at this point to help. We finally met back up with our family around 7pm where both Danny and Audrey were just physically and emotionally drained. We took them to the hospital to get checked out, and proceeded back to the hotel. With no Griffin. A lovely couple of ladies who helped us out TREMENDOUSLY volonteered to take Sir home with them and to be creamated at the vet the next day. We all tried to sleep that night, after four days of searching we were all exhaused.... then a miracle happened. Around 1:45 Danny got a phone call. I was the only one awake so I jumped out of bed and answered the phone. A woman on the other end said she had Griffin. I tried to keep calm and ask her if she just saw him or actually had him, knowing he was running from everyone. She told me he was in her yard about 10 feet from her. I asked that she not spook him and just talk very calmly and see if he would come to her. She did so, I could hear her sweet voice saying, "Hi Griffin, you must be tired. Are you hungry? Do you want some food?" Then, she said, "I got him!! I have his collar. At this point, Danny, Audrey, Zack, and Skye were all looking at me with eyes as big as the sky, and concern. I looked at them and said, "WE GOT HIM!! LETS GO GET GRIFF!" and we did. The couple lived about 5 minutes from our hotel, I pulled in the driveway, I couldn't even get the car in park before Danny and Audrey were barreling out of the car. They had their baby back. It was bittersweet. So, now you know the story and here's what I am asking... We are looking to help Danny and Audrey rebound from this vacation that turned into a nightmare. There were a lot of funds drained from their accounts with the accident, lodging, food, medical bills, vet bills, fuel, the rental truck, insurance costs, new vehicle and much more. So anything you can do to help Sir and Griffin, a soldier, and a family would be VERY much appreciated. 

THANK YOU!!!

Donations

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  • Anonymous 
    • $100 
    • 78 mos
  • Jeff Vander Ploeg 
    • $50 
    • 78 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $500 
    • 78 mos
  • Karen Reeds 
    • $25 
    • 78 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $100 
    • 78 mos
See all

Organizer

Tristan Kniceley 
Organizer
Wyoming, MI
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