Lifesavers: MFD crew rescues puppy from culvert

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Sookie is reunited with her family, thanks to Manchester firefighters. Photo/Jeffrey Hastings

MANCHESTER, NH – Tom Skafidas of Manchester was out walking his 20-week-old black lab puppy Sookie  on May 8 in Wolfe Park when Sookie slipped her collar and got away from him. Skafidas searched for several hours but was unable to find Sookie, so he let people know in the area to be on the lookout.

Late Tuesday afternoon someone heard Sookie in the culvert/sewer pipe which empties in to a swampy area and runs under the Wolfe Park ball field. Sookie was approximately 10 feet in and scared and wouldn’t come out. So Skiadis reached out to MFD who sent the Rescue 1 crew who tried several methods, including using food, to lure her out, but she kept going further in the pipe.

Sookie, a 20-month-old black lab, became trapped in this culvert. Photo/Jeffrey Hastings

As time went on MFD Engine 2 was called to the scene. MFD capped the end of a hose line, filling it and pushing it thru the pipe from the other end. Pushing approx 150-200 foot, Sookie was pushed out into the arms of the waiting owners Tom Skafidas and Sarah Blaisdell. Sookie was shivering, wet, and anxious but appeared to be happy.

The owners said without the MFD firefighters Sookie most likely wouldn’t have been rescued safely.  They happen to be the same crew on Rescue 1 that will be receiving a “hero award” in Concord on Wednesday at a ceremony honoring life-saving efforts. That rescue was a man they pulled from a burning building, saving his life.