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Animals

Man's Boat Sinks With Dogs But He Won't Let Them Drown

July 16th, 2018

We’ve all heard the saying that “Dog is Man’s Best Friend”, but rarely do we realize that this sentiment works both ways.

One Louisiana man though learned just how deep his bond with his two dogs runs.

On June 18th Christopher Burns of Bossier Parish, Louisiana was enjoying a day out on Lake Bisteneau in his boat with his two dogs, Saint and Tacoma.

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Wikimedia commons/Billy Hathorn Source: Wikimedia commons/Billy Hathorn

Then out of nowhere, his boat began sinking and it sank fast.

Burns told the local newspaper, the Shreveport Times, that after making a simple left turn, the boat began to take on water.

it was within two to three seconds, the boat was completely under water. It was just a left-hand turn, nothing that I hadn’t done a hundred times.

A few seconds is not much time to make a plan of action. Fortunately for the 33-year-old boater, he was wearing his life jacket which, in this scenario, made all the difference!

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Facebook Screenshot/Bossier Parish Sheriff's Office Source: Facebook Screenshot/Bossier Parish Sheriff's Office

Burns told the newspaper that when he realized his boat was going to be completely submerged, he knew he had to do something to save his dogs.

While he wasn’t too worried about himself because he had a life jacket, he wasn’t so sure that his dogs would be able to make it back with him.

Swimming would have likely worn them out before they ever reached the riverbank.

They were several hundred feet from the shore, and his dogs were growing panicked. Burns had to make a choice, and he chose his dogs.

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Facebook Screenshot/Bossier Parish Sheriff's Office Source: Facebook Screenshot/Bossier Parish Sheriff's Office

As his boat was going under, Christopher Burns stepped onto the tip of his boat and grabbed both dogs.

He held one dog under each arm as he fumbled out his phone and made the distress call to 911.

He tried to reach the emergency line several times, to no avail. The first call went through, but the connection was so bad on the water that dispatcher Allison Green couldn’t even hear him before the call was disconnected.

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Facebook Screenshot/Bossier Parish Sheriff's Office Source: Facebook Screenshot/Bossier Parish Sheriff's Office

This is where our second hero steps in.

Unwilling to think that there was someone in need of emergency assistance that she just couldn’t help, Allison Green repeatedly tried to reconnect with Burns until she finally reached him.

Burns remembers in the interview how truly grateful he was that she hadn’t just given up.

She assured me that help was on its way and that they were doing everything they could to get to me. Just the fact that she was keeping that line of communication open kind of made me feel like I wasn’t by myself.

He then added that because of his faith, he knew he was never really alone.

God was with me, so I wasn’t ever by myself at all.

Green told burns that help should arrive within 20 minutes, but due to his isolated location, it took quite a bit longer.

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Facebook Screenshot/Bossier Parish Sheriff's Office Source: Facebook Screenshot/Bossier Parish Sheriff's Office

Sometimes a crisis has more than one, or even two heroes. Burns’s story has five.

Once the call was made, Deputy Duane Washington and Sheriff’s Sgt. Tim Wynn were immediately dispatched to the camp Burns had been staying at in Elm Grove.

Patrolling Marine officers were still over an hour out from Burns, and they knew they had to act faster than that if they were going to save the man and his two dogs.

So they began going door to door looking for someone who could help get them to the scene.

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Facebook Screenshot/Bossier Parish Sheriff's Office Source: Facebook Screenshot/Bossier Parish Sheriff's Office

After approaching several houses, the officers finally found someone who could help them, even more than they had hoped.

Burn’s neighbor Thomas Murphee was outside when the officers came up and informed him of the situation.

Not only was Murphee willing to take them to the scene in on his pontoon boat, but he was also so familiar with the area that he knew exactly how to get to Burns, probably faster than most could.

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Facebook Screenshot/Bossier Parish Sheriff's Office Source: Facebook Screenshot/Bossier Parish Sheriff's Office

Finally, after waiting nearly an hour while trying to keep his and his dogs’ heads above water, his rescue party had arrived.

In the video, you can see the officers work to first get the dogs in the boat, at Burns’s eager behest.

In the interview with Shreveport, the officers recall how unconcerned Burns was about his own rescue because he was so focused on saving his dogs. Deputy Washington told the newspaper,

His main concern was the dogs. He had the life jacket on, he was holding onto the dogs under each arm, and he said, ‘Get the dogs, I’ll be okay.’ That’s what his first words were — ‘Get my dogs.’

Needless to say, this man will have two best friends for life, as you can see from the inspiring video of their rescue below.

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H/T: The Epoch Times