His name was Buddy Buttinski. He was a 4-and-a-half-year-old black lab with the most beautiful face. He was always happy and friendly, and oh how he loved to chase the ball. Every evening, Buddy and Hank would roughhouse in the front room, making all of us laugh.
In the early morning hours of Aug. 10, around 5:45 a.m., 50 yards from our house, on a road with clear visibility in both directions, Buddy was mercilessly stuck and killed by a thoughtless driver. The impact was so dramatic, forceful and severe that after having been struck and dragged a distance, his little body was ripped apart to the point of almost severing it in two.
As much as I loved Buddy, he was also a real pain in the butt, but he was our pain in the butt, and that stupid driver took that away from us.
More times than I care to count, Buddy would dig a hole under the chainlink fence and wiggle his way out of the yard, taking RajaBella with him so they could explore the open fields and forests. We’d say a prayer for their safe return and leave the gate open, and they always came home, sometimes with the help of a neighbor. Then, my husband would patch up the hole with cement until the next time.
I would chalk it up to Buddy’s misfortune except for this: There is no indication on the road that the driver ever applied his brakes or even tried to swerve to miss Buddy. The driver never stopped to see that Buddy wore a collar. He had a home. Nor did he stop to move Buddy to the side of the road. That cowardly driver left him there and kept on driving. What kind of heartless human does that?
We have no idea how Buddy got out of the yard that morning. We walked the fence line twice and couldn’t find any place where he might have tried to dig under the fence.
Buddy now rests besides Bruce Almighty. The tears are almost gone, but the emptiness remains. I hope the driver that killed our beloved Buddy never has to experience the sadness and loss that comes with such a dreadful act of inhumanity.
Little Hanaford Road is like an unnamed freeway. Cars and trucks constantly whiz by our house. I suspect few people pay attention to the 40 mph speed limit. If that driver had been driving at the proper speed limit and paying attention to the road, Buddy would still be alive today.
If you drive on any of the numerous country roads in Centralia, observe the speed limit. It’s posted for a reason.