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Brave woman died protecting her elderly rescued dog says friend

P8010053_thumb By Tamara | October 20, 2012 | Comments (11)

Bruce died with his owner while out on a walk

A devoted dog owner died with her dog while walking in a field near their home after cattle trampled them to death. Sandra Wiltshire, 68, was walking golden Labrador Retriever Bruce, aged 11, when the cows inexplicably became spooked and stampeded. Tragically, Sandra died at the scene and Bruce had to be put down later that day. The pair were discovered by dog walkers last Thursday and Sandra was able to tell them what happened before passing away.

Her friend of 20 years, Chris Jones, said Sandra visited the fields twice or sometimes three times a day. "That's the first serious incident that has been there. She was brave and not stupid. There was no way Bruce was antagonising those cows. He was a plodder," she said. "If anything happened to Bruce, Sandra would have rescued him."

Sandra WiltshireThe fields are near the River Avon in England and are popular with walkers, although not part of the footpath. Sandra was very familiar with the surroundings and had walked in the field for 20 years without incident.

Devastated friends and family paid tribute to Sandra, who had rescued Bruce 9 years ago. Clive and Joan Rathbad were close friends and neighbours of Sandra. Clive was Sandra's friend for 50 years. They said she was no doubt protecting her dog.

"Bruce was very old and wasn't capable of running. He could just waddle along." He described Bruce as the most placid dog he had ever met. "Nothing fazed him." He added that Bruce was friendly with every dog and every person he met. "He and Sandra were absolutely devoted to each other. She loved walking, and walked Bruce twice a day. I think she would have died protecting her dog. She would have defended him to the death."

Her grieving husband, retired lorry driver George said: "She was lovely. I loved her to bits. She looked after me brilliantly. I have lost both Sandra and Bruce." Sandra's 91 year old mother said she is in absolute shock. "I cannot tell you how much I miss her."

Via This is Bath

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Comments on this Article

Bless this lady....I know how she felt...I had to put myself between a moving car and 1 of my pit bulls when they came across the road trying to run him over, I took the hit protecting him.....This made me cry.....Many people never understand the love we have for our pets....Exsp. the ones we save and rescue....Play for eternity in the fields of heaven <3 RIP to both............
Better to die practicing a virtue than live without it. The virtue in question, courage, lies between fear and recklessness. If one makes this about the pet, an eleven year old dog, then perhaps it was foolish, but if it's about the virtue, itself, then I think this lady acted very courageously. If we all lived -- and if necessary died -- for virtue then the world could become quite transformed from what it is today. I think Sandra's life -- and death -- are ample testimonies to that fact.
She died trying to protect something she loved with all of her heart; her selflessness and self-sacrifice truly demonstrate the epitome of unconditional love. Her willingness to take it all the way, whereas others may just offer simple platitudes, she willingly went that one-step farther. If she were with us today and were asked the question if she regretted it, I'm certain her unequivocal response would be an immediate “NO.” I have never had the esteemed pleasure of meeting this fine lady, but simply by reading this Obituary of sorts, I am able to ascertain these remarkable traits of hers. Rest in Peace, Mrs. Sandra Wiltshire, Your work here on Earth is done; You have with you, your trusty companion Bruce, Enjoy your just rewards ma’am, you’ve certainly earned them. My condolences to the family and friends of Mrs. Wiltshire and Bruce. She was obviously a remarkable lady and I am certain that Bruce was a beloved member of the household as well, or the Lady of the house wouldn't have loved him as she did.
Such a tragedy. My condolences to the family.
This is so very sad! Now her husband has lost his life-mate, and also lost their beloved fur-person. I hope he finds comfort in thoughts & memories of all times shared together. This made me cry. Heartfelt thoughts and prayers for the family left behind.
A brave lady to do that for her beloved dog .. they tell us not to go in water after our pets or as this lady has done, shield them from stampeding cows - but how can a dog lover stand by and allow their pet to die. I certainly couldn't ... so I doubt many others could. Rest in peace Sandra & Bruce now together forever x
How sad. God bless the loved ones she and doggie left behind. We never know what lies ahead... let's count our blessings now.
God Bless her family, friends and dog! God bless this wonderful lady!
That woman has given her life for her pet and is an angel now. Her and her beloved dog can walk through the fields of Heaven together now....without having to worry about stampedes.
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