Josh’s dad received a birthday gift several years ago in the form of an adorable golden lab.  Since that day, the two have been inseparable.  Where Don went, there followed Sandy. 

It was evident early on that Sandy was a special dog.  While working outdoors with Michelle one afternoon, Sandy approached us several times looking very distraught.  The last time she approached she carefully placed a furless, baby squirrel at Michelle’s feet; so gently she didn’t harm tiny creature’s delicate skin.  Michelle said, “Sandy, where are they?” and Sandy sprinted off toward a storage garage nearby leading us to a nest of baby squirrels thrown out onto the drive by someone cleaning out his garage.  It was late March and cold, so we held the babies to our tummies to keep them warm and eventually sent them off to a wildlife rescue.  Sandy was so concerned that entire afternoon, nudging at us and checking on the babies as she might her own pups.  

The last time I saw Sandy was not long after her diagnosis with cancer.  She crawled up into my lap (something she had never before done) and when her eyes met mine, I said, “You’re ready, aren’t you.”  She was saying good-bye.  

Our thoughts are with the Marker family and with Sandy Bottoms, the best darn dog ever.