Miraculous Return: Canine Survives Fatal Crash and Wild, Reunited After 11 Days

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Canine Survives Fatal Crash and Wild

Miraculous Return: Canine Survives Fatal Crash and Wild, Reunited After 11 Days

 

A Miraculous Journey Back Home

Nelson, New Zealand – A heartwarming reunion story unfolds as Ace, a Border Collie, finds his way back to his family after a terrifying ordeal.

After surviving a horrific car crash that took a young man’s life and fleeing into the wild South Island bush, Ace is back in the loving arms of his owners after an emotional 11-day rollercoaster ride.

The Fateful Crash

The nightmare began on the King’s Birthday Weekend. Hailey Palmer, her partner Shaydan, and their 7-month-old baby Isla were on a journey through Lewis Pass, near Hanmer Springs.

As Palmer’s gaze was fixed downwards, an abrupt exclamation from her partner hinted at the impending disaster. Looking up, she saw a vehicle speeding towards them, culminating in a head-on collision that turned their world upside down – quite literally. Their vehicle capsized, ending up topsy-turvy on a roadside railing.

With her baby crying in the backseat and her own nose bleeding, Palmer found herself in a disoriented state of mind. Fear for the life of her child took precedence over all else.

In a rush of adrenaline, she managed to pass her child through the back window to the helping hands of strangers who had rushed to their aid.

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Chasing Shadows

During the chaos, their beloved dog Ace, who had been tied to the back of the ute, managed to slip free due to a safety catch on his collar designed to release under pressure. Overwhelmed by the events, Ace bolted away from the crash scene and vanished into the wild.

Although her partner Shaydan was unharmed and attempted to give chase, the immediate concern was towards the occupant of the other car involved in the crash – a young man in his 20s who had tragically lost his life.

Search for Ace: Hope Against Hope

Palmer and her family, having suffered no serious injuries, were sent to Christchurch Hospital for checks. As the shock of the fatal accident slowly started to wane, their attention turned towards Ace.

canine survives fatal crash and wild

Assuming the worst outcome, Palmer’s heart filled with despair at the thought of Ace being seriously injured or even succumbing to his injuries in the wilderness.

Despite their worries, the family set off the very next day, placing food and a jacket carrying their scent at the crash site in an attempt to lure Ace back.

Their appeal for help on social media garnered the attention of Don Schwass, a Search and Rescue operative with over two decades of experience in tracking lost dogs in the bush.

Unwavering Determination: The Search Continues

The commitment to finding Ace was unwavering. Armed with dashcam footage that showed Ace dashing across the road a day after the crash, Schwass continued his relentless search for Ace across the vast and wild terrain, keeping locals updated via his social media page.

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After nearly two weeks, his determination bore fruit, and he was able to give the joyous news to Palmer, “I got him,” he said over the phone. In disbelief, she drove to the rendezvous point to find her long-lost canine companion.

A Heartwarming Reunion

As Palmer cautiously stepped out of her car, the cameras began to roll, capturing the emotional reunion between her and Ace.

The sight of Ace, seemingly resurrected from the dead and miraculously unscathed except for a few bruises, brought tears to her eyes. “He came back from the dead almost, it was amazing he survived that sort of crash,” she later said.

An Unforgettable Journey

In the end, this terrifying ordeal only highlighted the resilience of life and the power of a community working together. As Palmer aptly put it, “It’s amazing how much people have responded to help find Ace.” This story is a reminder that even in the face of adversity, hope and determination can lead to miracles.

For Schwass, this successful reunion reiterates his passion for his work. “It’s the joy of tracking and the reunion with the family. It’s just like a member of the family – I think the couple had more of a shock from the reunion than from the accident.”


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Find the original story from the New Zealand Herald here.