1. Today my nephews said goodbye to their beloved beagle, Buddy. My sister's gang got him in 2004, when he was around three or four years old. His origin was never clear, but based on behavior and health problems that arose it was always assumed that he had been abused before he came into their home.
  2. Buddy was present for all the ups and downs of my family for over a decade, a constant character in the background of so much melodrama. He lived with Kira, Brian, and the boys first in Harrisburg, PA, then Chardon, OH, and finally in Yellow Springs, OH.
  3. Of particular importance to me, he was also incidentally the last canine friend with whom my dad, a lifelong dog-lover, ever lived. Dad used to joke that Buddy was pitiful - in fact, we all often made jokes that Buddy forever seemed as if he was one pawstep away from keeling over dead.
  4. And he survived many close calls, including one in October, 2015 when I remember going over to the house to be with him while no one was home. I took photos and videos, feeling certain this was the last time I'd see him. But he had almost two years left in him. As it turned out, the joke was on us all along.
  5. And even the toughest of dog critics like my dad would welcome Buddy's unsteady hop of front paws onto his lap, or one of his wheelchair wheels, and indulge The Poor Beagle, The Great Everlasting Survivor, in some behind the ears scratches.
  6. It was that kind of love for which Buddy always seemed so eager and appreciative, as if he'd been denied it in those cruel years before he was ever a member of our family.
  7. Goodbye to a sweet part of The Lugo/Veshecco/Harpst/Terry family - dear ol' Buddy. We love you. ❤️