The dog, named Duke had fallen through the ice after being turned out to use the bathroom. At the time of his river expedition, Duke had been missing for three days.
Witnesses who saw the stranded dog called the Trenton fire and police, who showed up on-scene but decided it was too dangerous to chance a rescue.
Duke had been on the ice for more than four hours when Ewing Animal Control called Russ Miller and asked for help. Luckily, Russ had a kayak and a wet suit. Ciro Silvestri heard about the dog from a relative and rushed to the scene.
Together the men were able to rescue Duke shortly before 6:00 p.m. Since Duke was terrified and afraid to move, the men had to push the kayak carefully across the river and physically place him inside. The actual rescue only took about 15 minutes.
When asked why they would risk their lives over a dog, the men responded. Russ stated in an interview with ABC Global “I didn’t think. I just went out there and got him. We had the canoe in case anything happens.” Ciro expressed his reason to get involved as “I love animals, that’s it.”
Although neither man was injured during the rescue, it’s not something those involved in rescue would recommend others to attempt. The outcome could have turned deadly at any moment. These two heroes were the first to admit there were times when it felt like the ice would give way.
Duke was taken to West Trenton Animal Hospital and is doing well, despite his brush with death. Thank you to those who saved his life. You are truly heroes. Heroes who make this writer VERY nervous…