Frances, Rest in Peace

My first dog died on Monday evening (5/19). She turned 14 last month. My wife got her for me the second summer we were dating in college from the Humane Society in Columbia, MO when I was 22. She was loyal-goofy-ultarunnin-squirrel chasin-backpackin-scramblin-fetchin’ machine. We’re going to miss her a bunch.

She didn’t suffer much. She woke up Monday morning and played with my younger dog, Mabel, rolling on the ground and wrestling…took a nap in the afternoon. When I woke her up to put her in their kennel/dog run in the afternoon before we went somewhere, she was acting out of it. Within 3 hours, she was gone.

We all got to say goodbye, pet her and hang out for about 3 hours with her panting and not being able to get up on her own. We left and she died shortly after. I’m going to sprinkle some of her ashes on the summit of Gray Butte where she has summited many times on hard training runs with me. The rest will go with us to the farm we eventually find.

She was a great ultra training partner, consistent with her pace and never complained (even if she ripped a pad). She’s run thousands of miles over the years, teamed up with me on countless backpacking trips all over the west (all the while carrying her own supplies).

She trained almost every step I trained for Western States 100 in the ’02 season and continued to run up to 20 mile outings with me until she was 12. Our 8 year old dog, Mabel is taking it pretty hard and has been depressed, as she’s been tied at the hip with Frances since she was a puppy. We’re keeping her close with the family in everything we’re doing. Goodbye, Frances, rest in peace ‘ole girl.

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