Sandy, a golden retriever, had been held at the Humane Society of South Mississippi. The animal had been found in a car on Interstate 10 in Harrison County.
The owner was traveling home from Texas to Florida for the Thanksgiving holidays when he died of natural causes on the way, according to the Harrison County Coroner.
“They had one transaction where he had stopped at a gas station and then his wife just never heard from him again, so it was kind of a frantic search,” said Michelle Londke, a friend of the family.
Harrison County Sheriff Troy Peterson said the vehicle was first noticed by a tow truck driver on Saturday, WLOX reported. Deputies responded to a call from the same tow truck driver who stopped Sunday to see if the vehicle had been marked by the sheriff’s department.
That’s when the tow driver noticed the man inside but didn't know if he was sleeping or something was wrong. A deputy responded and discovered the man was dead, WLOX reported.
Londke and Sherryl Jenkinson, both from the Tampa Bay area, got in touch with the humane society and a trip was organized to pick up Sandy, WLOX reported. Now, the friends are going back with heavy hearts, but a sense of joy in getting Sandy back home. After going through so much, this leg of the trip will likely be pretty good for Sandy.
“Mama said she could have a cheeseburger on the way home. So we're going to make a pit stop at McDonald's. We're going to spoil her on the way home,” Londke told WLOX.
Sandy’s going home to Florida after being trapped in a car on the side of I-10 for 8 days with her deceased owner. Absolutely tragic story with an amazing ending. Details soon on @WLOXpic.twitter.com/vHwSEgSoZ8