The following story was found tucked away in a scrapbook at the Dyke Street Museum. Jack Bush (son of John Bush) remembers the story and thinks it may date to the late 1950’s. Perhaps our readers may remember something….
The death of Mildred, Main street’s canine traffic cop and night watchman, inspires a feeling of sincere sadness. She was graced with a character and a figure that made her one of Wellsville’s best known dogs.
Mildred had an outstanding personality. Her friendliness endeared her to dozens of persons along Main street where she paid almost daily visits. She was ever ready to greet her friends with a wagging tail and was never known to show animosity to young or old.
It could not be said that in figure or in form she had beauty, and it is possible that her short legs and slow meanderings contributed almost entirely to her untimely death.
Mildred was gregarious. She could not stand the confinement of her home on Stevens street and continually chewed through wire fences in her determination to pay those daily visits to Main street. Like so many humans, who have leisure time, she was unhappy at home.
Sometimes she spent the night up town, other times she was taken home by some one of the dozens who knew her. A page from her diary might read like this:
“Up bright and early, Decided to see if Bill McAndrews or John Bush were on the job. Found Bill who opened can of food. Nice fellow Bill. Took little nap back of the counter. Went to city hall. Eddie out reading meters. Called on Ollie Sweet and visited the Mayor’s office. Fire bell rang. Set up quite a howl but no body paid much attention to me.”
“Went back to Bush’s. John working now. Took another nap. Al Gent and Norm Gallman woke me up arguing over pool game during noon hour. Took walk across street. Went back to Bush’s for another nap. Woke up and called at the Reporter office. Slept most of the evening at Bush’s store. Store closed, went over to see Howie Englebaugh at the Brunswick. He closed up too. Walked home with somebody who knew where I lived and sot o bed.”
But Mildred has made her last trip. She has gone to the Happy Hunting Ground of dogdom – gone where the rabbits run slower, where they hunt every day and where motor cars never travel. Behind she leaves friends who are sad. Her friendship was their reward for kindness. Her love went out to all who showed affection. From Mildred and from our own dogs, we all can learn much about true loyalty, sincere love and honest friendship.
Note: Jack Bush added a little footnote to the story. Mildred was sleeping in the store when the fire alarm sounded. Mildred took off after the fire trucks (with her short little legs) and was struck by a car and killed on the corner near the Brunswick Hotel.