Glen Osborne family mourning death of dog, wants fence at park

Monday, October 3, 2016 | 3:14 PM


A Glen Osborne family is seeking changes at Mary Roberts Rinehart Park after their dog was struck and killed by two cars on Route 65 over Labor Day weekend.

Glen Osborne resident Lynda Marecic said Lilly, a 7-year-old fawn pug, wiggled loose from her leash on Sept. 3 while walking at the park along Beaver Road in the borough. The dog ran to the top overlook near Osborne Elementary School, through the brush and straight down to busy Route 65, Marecic said.

Marecic's boyfriend, Andrew Leckie, and his 15-year-old daughter, went looking for the dog. Marecic said the teen watched in horror as the family dog was hit by two cars. Leckie, handling a second yellow lab, ran down the hill, stopped traffic and ran onto the state highway to get the dog. The pug did not survive.

“My concern, in the middle of this horrible time that we're mourning the loss of this dog, I want something to be done so that this doesn't happen to somebody else,” said Marecic, of Osborne Lane.

The privately-owned park is overseen by a board. Marecic said she is hoping to convince members of the park board to install a fence or barrier on the top of the hill along the end of the park and another barrier at the bottom.

She said there is a small wooden barrier, but it covers only a portion, leaving access to Route 65 from the top and a turnaround at the bottom portion.

Marecic wrote a letter to Bill Boswell, park board president, calling for action to be taken to fix the access before more life-changing tragedies occur.

“As you can imagine, we are all horrified and beyond sad. I will never be able to erase the images from my mind of that day, nor my daughters. I just want to do all I can to prevent this from happening to another person's pet or child.”

In a written response to Marecic, Boswell expressed sympathy for the loss of her dog, but said he didn't believe a fence was a practical solution. Boswell did not return calls seeking comment from a reporter.

Glen Osborne Mayor Barbara Carrier, also a member of the park board, said board members planned to bring up the matter at a meeting they had Monday night. She said she felt horrible about what happened.

“I'm a dog owner myself and I know how hard that is. It's very difficult and my heart goes out to her and her family for sure,” Carrier said.

Carrier said one of the areas under scrutiny has a sewer line that goes through it and she wasn't sure anything could be done there.

“I don't know what the fix is,” she said. “I mean, it's always, ‘dogs should be under control. They should be on a leash,' but I understand the concerns and we are going to discuss it. The board is going to take it up and take a look at it, for sure.”

Marecic said the Quaker Valley School District has a fence all along and around the neighboring school. She doesn't understand why there can't be a similar barrier placed in the park. If that's not going to happen, at the very least, she said she wants people to know it is open and to be careful.

“We take our dogs there all the time. I see other pets there and animals there, people take their kids there... you can't put a child on a leash.”

“We're not going back to the park because we can't after this,” she said. “It's a sad situation.”

Larissa Dudkiewicz is a Tribune-Review contributing writer.