Last month, John Cassabria was delivering packages in Woburn, Massachusetts, when he heard an unusual noise. He opened the door of his Amazon van to listen — but he still couldn’t identify it.
“The noise I heard was still so indescribable,” Cassabria told The Dodo. “It was something like a siren raid mixed with howling — like how the wind howls through the tree branches.”
Being a naturally inquisitive person, Cassabria decided to follow the noise, which led him to a fence surrounding a house. There, he spotted the source of the odd sound — a dog stuck in a pool, crying for help.
A 14-year-old husky named Luka had been treading water for an unknown amount of time and was too exhausted to hold himself up any longer.
“As soon as I knew what it was, the sound was no longer interesting, it was alarming,” Cassabria said. “My heart sank. I wasn’t sure until I physically got to him that he was still with us, and all I could think about was getting him out of the pool and making sure that he was safe.”
Cassabria jumped in the water while still wearing his shoes and was able to hoist the dog onto dry land.
“After he was out of the pool, he was very shook up, very scared,” Cassabria said. “He didn’t want me to leave his side. Every time I would go to get up, he would hit me with his paw or nudge me — so I stayed with him the entire time.”
Cassabria called animal control and waited with Luka for an hour and a half. The animal control officer turned out to be a neighbor of the homeowners and phoned them to fill them in on the rescue.
The senior dog had gotten himself into trouble before his dog sitter arrived — and if Cassabria hadn’t been there to save the day, things would have ended very differently. Luka’s owner Lucy Cadwell thanked Cassabria profusely.
Cassabria, who owns four dogs of his own, is just happy he was in the right place at the right time to help a dog in need.
“I know a lot of people have been using the word ‘heroic’ and ‘hero,’ and maybe it’s me being modest, but a month later, I still don’t see myself as a hero,” Cassabria said. “I see myself as a person who [did] what any dog owner would have done.”