UPDATE: New fund honors company that rescued dog

Published: Jun. 17, 2020 at 11:40 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

UPDATE: 7/02/2020:

Renee Gilmer, the Pennsylvania woman whose dog was rescued by the Marietta company O’Brien’s Safety Services in June, wants to repay the act of kindness. Gilmer’s black lab, Dutch, fell into an overflow drain. After firefighters were unable to reach the dog, Gilmer Googled “confined space rescue,” and O’Brien’s was the first result. She contacted the company, whose workers ultimately rescued the dog.

Gilmer created a fund at the Marietta Community Foundation (MCF) in honor of Dutch’s rescuers. The Fund is called “Dutch & O’Brien’s Act of Kindness Fund,” and it will help support local nonprofits in the area each year.

Twice a year, the Foundation welcomes Washington County nonprofits to apply to their grant cycles for funding for programs and projects that benefit the community. With one cycle in the spring and the other in the fall, the Foundation is able to award hundreds of thousands of dollars annually.

The new fund created in honor of O’Brien’s rescue will be added to the financial pool that supports these projects and programs throughout the county.

“I am so grateful to Gary and his team and I really need to pay this forward to try to help other people in some way,” said Gilmer.

Members of the community are invited to honor Gary O’Brien and the rest of the staff at O’Brien’s Safety Services by donating to the “Dutch & O’Brien’s Act of Kindness Fund.”

ORIGINAL STORY: 6/20/2020:

Renee Gilmer recently lost her job, due to the coronavirus, and was visiting friends in her hometown of Avella, Pennsylvania.

This weekend she was spending time with her three dogs by a pond, when her black lab, Dutch, fell into an overflow drain.

Gilmer could see Dutch and he was responding to her, but he was stuck and could not move.

Firefighters were called to the scene, but could not reach the dog, as he was more than 20 feet deep in the 18-inch wide drain.

Gilmer and her friends had no choice but to return home for the night to brainstorm ideas of who could help with their problem.

Dutch stayed in the pipe overnight.

Gilmer searched "confined space rescue" on Google and she says the first result was O'Brien's Safety Services from Marietta, Ohio.

She called O'Brien's, and in the morning President Gary O'Brien returned her call.

He gathered employees from both Marietta and Maryland, and they headed to Avella.

Upon arrival, one employee, Carri Tucker, was small enough to fit in the small pipe.

She was attached to a harness and entered the pipe from the other end, crawling nearly 200 feet to Dutch.

Once she reached him, she repositioned the dog and guided him as the two were pulled to safety.

Dutch immediately ran to Gilmer, and had no injuries.

O'Brien did not charge Gilmer for the rescue and says "it was the right thing to do."

O’Brien, Gilmer, and Tucker have all been in contact nearly every day since the rescue, and O’Brien has decided to name one of his company trucks “Dutch”.