MVA loses dog but valley residents don’t give up

November 25th began as just an ordinary day for Brad Silbernagel and his companion dog Midnight, a black Labrador mix, as they travelled along the highway just south of Little Fort.

Brad Silbernagel reunites with his lost buddy Midnight.

Brad Silbernagel reunites with his lost buddy Midnight.

November 25th began as just an ordinary day for Brad Silbernagel and his companion dog Midnight, a black Labrador mix, as they travelled along the highway just south of Little Fort.

All of a sudden an unseen patch of black ice caused the van to spin out of control, hitting and shearing off a telephone pole and somersaulting into the ditch. Although the vehicle was totaled, Brad and 10-year-old Midnight were not seriously injured. But the dog was shocked into panic, and before Brad had a chance to restrain her, she had run off.

Fortunately luck was with Midnight, as the accident happened close to Ken Beck’s home in Darfield, who was on the scene right away, assisting Brad, and also offering to help locate the dog.

Immediately the word went out about the accident, and the traumatized dog that was on the run in strange surroundings.

Ken spoke to Rebecca McIntire, a resident in the area, who in turn called her friend Elli Kohnert, who is known as the “animal lost and found person” to call for help. Many other residents in the area were also asked to be on the lookout for a very frightened, cold and hungry dog.

Although Midnight was spotted in the area near the accident scene, she was far too scared to let anyone approach her.

Brad returned to the area to look for his dog, but after hours of fruitless searching had to give up and return to Kamloops.

Many days later Elli Kohnert received a call from the Rosen family in Darfield, to say that a black Lab mix had come to their home, but could not be approached. It was quickly established that the stray was the lost Midnight.

When Brad was notified he was ecstatic exclaiming, “I can’t believe she is alive, she has never spent a night outside.”

When he drove up the long driveway to the Rosen’s he saw his dog, and was instantly devastated that still very traumatized, she ran away from him. No amount of coaxing would bring the dog close, and eventually Brad had to return to Kamloops. Before he left though he spoke to Ken Beck, and then put out food for Midnight, and tied his shirt to the fence there so she would smell his familiar scent and hopefully eat and stay in the vicinity.

Ken loves dogs, and as a result he spent endless hours trying to coax the frightened Midnight to let him touch her.

Brad placed his dog’s doghouse, food, and blankets where she had been seen most often, hoping she would relax and stay there, but that did not happen.

The dog’s safety was uppermost in his mind when he heard shots fired in his neighborhood on the morning of Dec.1. His own dog had been shot by a neighbor, raising the fear that Midnight had met the same fate.

During the night Ken saw Midnight near his home, and he quickly placed some liver in his own dog’s secure kennel as an invitation to Midnight. That was too much for a hungry dog to resist, and when Midnight entered the enclosure she activated the yard light. The light alerted Brad that she was in there, and he quickly closed the gate. Once in a secure environment Midnight became her friendly trusting self, and followed Ken everywhere.

When Brad was notified Midnight was safe, he lost no time to get to Ken and his beloved old dog. It was an emotional, joyful reunion for him and for Midnight, and was exactly one week after she had run off.

“I can’t believe how amazingly helpful the people are in this area, it would not be the same in Kamloops,” said Brad.

On the way home to Kamloops Brad and Midnight stopped at Elli Kohnert’s house in Barriere for a brief visit. He said he wanted everyone to know how very thankful he was for the return of his dog. And Midnight was her tail-wagging, happy self; loving all the attention she received.

Brad was eager to go home though, telling Elli, “I want to get home so that I can cook her the biggest steak I can find. Then just settle down after all the worry we had, and just cuddle up with my buddy.”

Just Posted

A for sale sign is shown in by new homes in Beckwith, Ont., just outside Ottawa, on Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Thompson-Okanagan population grew despite COVID-19: report

The Chartered Professional Accountants of BC said there are 8,462 new residents in the region

Residents line up outside the Vernon Recreation Complex for their COVID-19 vaccine Saturday, June 5. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
No appointments necessary for first dose COVID-19 vaccine: Interior Health

People can just show up at clinics, register on the spot and get the shot

(TNRD Library)
Let the mystery of the Summer Reading Club begin

Are you ready to ‘Crack the Case’ at the Barriere Library?

(Metro Creative photo)
Gardeners of all ages invited to enter 2021 NT Fall Fair contests

The North Thompson Fall Fair Drive Thru scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 4,… Continue reading

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

(Black Press Media file)
Dirty money: Canadian currency the most germ-filled in the world, survey suggests

Canadian plastic currency was found to contain 209 bacterial cultures

(pixabay file shot)
B.C. ombudsperson labels youth confinement in jail ‘unsafe,’ calls for changes

Review states a maximum of 22 hours for youth, aged 12 from to 17, to be placed in solitary

Eleonore Alamillo-Laberge, 6, reads a book in Ottawa on Monday, June 12, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Parents will need to fight ‘COVID learning slump’ over summer: B.C. literacy experts

Parents who play an active role in educating their children this summer can reverse the slump by nearly 80%, says Janet Mort

Kelowna General Hospital. (File photo)
COVID-19 outbreak at Kelowna General Hospital declared over

Three people tested positive for the virus — two patients and one staff — one of whom died

The border crossing on Highway 11 in Abbotsford heading south (file)
Western premiers call for clarity, timelines on international travel, reopening rules

Trudeau has called Thursday meeting, premiers say they expect to leave that meeting with a plan

The B.C. government’s vaccine booking website is busy processing second-dose appointments, with more than 76 per cent of adults having received a first dose. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations stable for Tuesday

108 new confirmed cases, 139 in hospital, 39 in intensive care

A worker, at left, tends to a customer at a cosmetics shop amid the COVID-19 pandemic Thursday, May 20, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Half of cosmetics sold in Canada, U.S. contain toxic chemicals: study

Researchers found that 56% of foundations and eye products contain high levels of fluorine

Most Read