Dog kills owner
Tue, May 30, 2006
Man was playfully poking wife when pet turned on him
By LONDON FREE PRESS STAFF
WELLBURN — An elderly man is dead after his pitbull crossbreed dog viciously attacked him Monday and tore open his throat in front of his horrified wife and a taxi driver.
John Martin, 77, from this small community just south of St. Marys, didn’t even see the attack coming, said Lynn-del Alderson, the cab driver who witnessed the terrifying scene with Martin’s wife, Nancy.
“The dog started charging and pounced on him from behind,” said a visibly shaken Alderson, who was delivering groceries to the couple just before 5 p.m.
“He didn’t have a chance.”
Just minutes earlier, the couple — married for 25 years — had been laughing and joking with each other on the lawn of their tiny farmhouse, Alderson said.
The couple’s 5-year-old dog, a 90-pound pitbull/lab crossbreed named Buster, was playing off the leash nearby, she said.
Alderson, who regularly made deliveries to the couple, remained in her taxi, having already been warned by the owners not to leave the car because the dog had been aggressive in the past.
What happened next was a “surreal” twist of events that started when Martin playfully poked his 57-year-old wife and then turned to walk away, she said.
Through her driver's side window, Alderson watched in horror as the hulking dog lunged at the 77-year-old from behind and knocked him over.
“They were just being goofy with each other, but as soon as John walked away, Buster ran at him,” she said. “It was like he was protecting (Nancy.)”
Martin, a slight and gentle man, according to Alderson, struggled to get the hulking dog off him.
“John ended up on his back and the dog lunged right for his throat.”
Seeing that Nancy was frozen in shock, Alderson jumped out of her cab to see if she could find anything to beat the dog away from Martin.
“I was just screaming for her to get the dog off him and I couldn’t find anything to use to get Buster off,” she said, adding she then dialed 911.
When Nancy sprang into action, it took precious seconds for her to coaxe the beast off her husband, Alderson said.
Nancy put the dog on its leash and stashed it inside and the pair went to work on the husband, who was bleeding profusely from the neck.
“We were putting towels on his neck, but there was just so much blood,” Alderson said. http://lfpress.ca/newsstand/News/Local/ ... 06125.html