Remember reminder that we will be re-opening next Wed 2/15 at our usual hours of 4-9 PM. We will be sending out our Post-Valentine Day specials in the next 4 days. It will be great to catch-up with our members/friends. Since we have a few spare minutes, we thought we would share with you, one of our favorite local stories about a very special girl. Maybe some of you will remember her.
How many of you remember the Hendersonville Dog? Well, she was a survivor. As we later learned, we all had our pet names for her – Tiger, Baby Girl, Boo…. Mary Cervini (what a remarkable person) started one of the first rescue programs in the county and later realized that the solution may not be rescue but spay/neuter. So she set about setting up a program to catch, neuter, and release as many stray dogs and cats as she possibly could. Thank you, Mary!! She hired someone to catch and bring to her the 35+ feral cats hiding out back at Home Depot. The cat crowd had grown into a life of their own in the thick grass and debris – thanks and no thanks to the compassionate employees aiding the growing numbers. But Mary took a particular interest in “Hendersonville’s Dog” as did I. Mary contacted all animal shelters and possible collection points for strays and asked them to be on the look outlook for “Hendersonville’s Dog.” If sited or caught Mary was to be notified and would take possession.
The Dog roamed freely from Hardees on South Main (now TD Bank) to the small mall on 25 North (Salvation Army drop-off) about 3 miles. She would venture off the main drag into the adjoining streets – anywhere she could pick up some crumbs. Our story started with feeding the stray we named Boo in the summer of 2014 and although sporadic she caught on quickly and was a regular at our feeding station and so it would come to pass at many of her admirers’ stations. Bottom line we all loved her!
Well Mary noted a very large growth on Hendersonville Dog’s chest that was scary and needed attention so the search and capture for her became more intense. Mary heard of a sighting of the dog that had crawled beneath an abandoned shed belonging to the American Red Cross (across the street from the HC Courthouse.) So she sprang into action, taking a leash and husband (in that order) to the sighting of “H’ville Dog” she proceeded to crawl underneath the broken down shed with leash in hand. The H’ville dog cowered underneath the floor and Mary (says she intuitively knew the dog was not a biter) hooked the leash and dragged the poor animal out. Out The Dog began to hysterically jump in circles, yanking and pulling desperately to become free again. But Mary held on and took the hysterical animal to the local vet to be sedated and diagnosed. The growth on the chest was much larger than anticipated and needed immediate medical attention. So how to raise enough monies in a short amount of time to get the surgery? We agreed to spend 4 hours asking for monies. This quest to raise monies introduced us to our real community – those pockets of humanity lying there waiting to be touched and Boo, the innocent, grabbed those souls. Setting out on 7th to raise salvation funds, we approached Underground Bakery who gave money, Kilpatrick Upholstery who had followed the dog for years, gave; as we strolled down King Street we encountered more of Boo’s devotees – AAA Bonds had established a special feeding station at the southeast corner of their building, filling the bowls daily, and across the street at Roper Insurance and Apple Country Realty, same MO. Then heading back north to Seventh we passed Youngblood Oil Company who placed food dishes under the back of the building, and across the street at Auto Werx – yes they too put out food for “Tiger.” The underground Bakery told the story that one day they saw “the dog” dragging the leg of a deer down the middle of the street and assumed she had caught a deer (It was later revealed that the bones had been given to “Boo” from M & M Freezer Locker. They had been dressing deer that day so she received a taste of wild venison – sorry to burst their bubble but we could not let anyone think that Boo was a deer killer.)
Well, the community rallied and a sufficient amount was collected to make a dent in the surgery that “Boo” would be needing. Marvelous Mary took “Boo” to the vet where she received the surgery and a 5- pound cancerous tumor was removed from her chest on July 23, 2015. Although her time would be limited there was hope for some quality time left. In fact, she went to live with Mary who had 4 other dogs and a very large back yard. Boo fit nicely in the family and passed away peacefully on Friday, March 18, 2016 at 1:30 PM in the compassionate arms of Mary. For the dog re-named “Baby Girl” Mary had an open visitation sent to all those who had known her and given monies. Several went and were able to touch the friend they had cared for from afar. Baby Girl, Tiger, Boo – will be remembered with love.