After dramatic dog rescue, owner, firefighters reunite

After dramatic dog rescue, owner, firefighters reunite

GRESHAM, Ore. – A firefighter and the owner of a dog he rescued off a ledge reunited Friday all for a simple "thank you."

Gresham firefighter Bob Chamberlin dangled over a quarry on the edge of Northwest Portland and Gresham Tuesday. He and his team rescued the 2-year-old pit bull, Daisy. Since then, her owner, Tammie Johnson asked KATU to help her see the rescue team again.

Johnson was so concerned about Daisy the night of the rescue she later realized she barely spoke with the Gresham firefighters who risked their lives in the rescue. So she had to go back to thank them.

For Johnson, giving a hug, a handshake and saying “thank you” to Chamberlin and his team were not formalities; instead, they were necessary steps and the least she could do.

"You going down on that rope, down that pit, that was just amazing," she told Chamberlin.

Daisy had been missing for a week when she was found 50-feet down that quarry on a shaky ledge. It's a moment Johnson can't forget.

"I have a very big fear, it's like I leave the house, I'm so concerned she's not going to be there," she said.

But at least thanking the firefighters helped, and she knows the rescue could have ended differently. But it didn't. Daisy only has a bruise on her nose and a few scratches.

"After Daisy was fine, I thought, 'Man, I gotta go back and say thank you to everyone that did what they did,'" Johnson said. "I mean he risked his life to come down and take care of my dog."

"It makes me feel good," Chamberlin said. "I do this job to help people."

Chamberlin said one of the hardest things about the rescue was that he couldn't communicate well with a dog, because he didn't know what would work to calm her. But it turned out that having one of the owner's t-shirts did the trick.

People with the Oregon Humane Society had made that suggestion. They were also out on the scene that night. Daisy's family plans to go there next week to say thank you to them as well.