Firefighters help Molly, by golly

By MARK I. JOHNSON
Staff Writer

Last update: July 02, 2005


EDGEWATER -- A couple of Edgewater firefighters got a cold and wet thank you Friday morning.

Molly the Dalmatian, along with her boy, 7-year-old Kyle Nevard and her "aunt," Debby Loeffler, both of Edgewater, came to Fire Station 57 on Hibiscus Drive to express their gratitude for help with a recent medical emergency.

According to Kyle, he and his mom, Virginia Nevard, arrived at their Victory Palm Drive home shortly before 6:30 p.m. June 19 to find the 11-year-old dog unconscious and in respiratory distress.

"When we went inside, there was Molly, lying on her side with a doughnut bag stuck on her head," the youngster said. "I took it off her. Her tongue was sticking out (of her mouth) and she was breathing really fast."

Kyle said he tried to call 911, but hung up. Then another family member called the Loeffler residence, while Virginia Nevard tried mouth to mouth on the animal.

"Everyone was hysterical," Loeffler's husband, Larry, said. "I wasn't sure if (the patient) was my sister-in-law or the dog."

He called 911 and passed that information on to the operator, he said.

That may explain why, when firefighters Dennis Meeske and John Halcomb, along with Lt. Jim Jollie, arrived on the scene, they were expecting a human patient. What they got was Molly.

Rather than being taken aback, the emergency workers took the species confusion in stride, Meeske said. Using a respiratory mask designed for canines, the trio administered oxygen to the dog.

"We used one whole bottle," he said. "Then we put her on another bottle and got her into a car where (the family) took her to an emergency clinic in Daytona Beach."

"This was my first dog rescue," Halcomb said.

For the next week or so, Molly was in and out of the vet's office, Loeffler said.

Molly showed no ill effects of her ordeal Friday morning, tail wagging as she went from person to person looking for a pat on the head. The Dalmatian may not have been able to verbally express her gratitude, but she was quick on the nuzzle.

"We are glad we could help," Meeske told the family and the dog.

mark.johnson@news-jrnl.com