Fairfield Ledger

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Neighbors Growing Together | Oct 19, 2017

Fairfield dog rescued from river in Iowa City

Jan 24, 2010
Kim Conrad of Fairfield plays with Johnson, her yellow Labrador retriever, this morning outside The Ledger office. The 1-year-old dog had to be rescued from the Iowa River Friday afternoon in Iowa City after he fell through the ice while trying to get a drink of water. —JULIE JOHNSTON/Ledger photo

Kim Conrad’s yellow Labrador retriever is back to his boisterous self after a close call Friday afternoon.

Neither Fairfield resident Conrad nor her 1-year-old dog Johnson knew of the adventure ahead when they set out for Iowa City Friday.

Before taking care of some business, Conrad intended to spend some time at the dog park. She couldn’t find the dog park though, and the two ended up at Iowa City’s Lower City Park, where Johnson broke through the ice while attempting to drink from the Iowa River.

“First I thought he was just going to swim out because he always does,” Conrad said. But the ice kept giving away under the large retriever as he attempted to pull himself out of the water.

A passerby cautioned Conrad against going onto the ice herself and attempted to flag down help, but after about 10 minutes, Conrad called 911.

“They were very kind and really helpful,” Conrad said. “I didn’t know if you could call 911 for an animal, but I didn’t really have a choice.”

Four fire trucks, a squad car and a rescue van responded to the call, and Lt. Brian Rohr plunged into the frigid water to rescue Johnson, who was clinging to the edge of ice about 15 feet from the river bank.

For the complete article and photo, see the Monday, Jan. 25, 2010, printed edition of The Fairfield Ledger.

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