Me (Addison), Emily (my wife), and two good friends were headed to the duck hole around 4:00 am that morning. We had to pass through a small town in the middle of Kansas to get there and came up to a 4 way stop with the blinking red lights. I stopped and looked both ways and saw an SUV in the distance on my right.
As I pulled through the light, the SUV kept going without slowing down and smashed into the side of my truck going somewhere around 40-50 miles an hour – the classic t-bone.
The first thing I did was check on Emily and the other passengers. As soon as I made sure my wife and everyone in my truck – and the other vehicle was okay – I immediately ran back to check on my dog Chevy.
The All-Weather Kit 2.0 and Cold Weather Door Cover were on the kennel since it was around 20 degrees outside, so I opened the door to see him and the first thing he did was lick me in the face. You could hear his tail beating against the kennel from wagging so hard.
At that point, it was such a relief. It seemed like it was in slow motion, but all of it happened so fast at the same time.
The SUV that hit us was totaled, but everyone in the car was okay. Thankfully, I was somehow able to drive my truck, so after the police report, we ended up going on our way to go hunt and got there 10 minutes before shooting hours.
Chevy was perfectly fine and got to pick up his share (along with two other dogs) of the 10-man limit that day.
After the hunt, Emily and I sat back and finally took in what had happened. We went from getting t-boned at 4 in the morning to duck hunting with some of our good friends for the rest of the weekend, watching Chevy make all the retrieves he could want. That hunt is one I will never forget.
I always knew how important the kennel and tie-down straps were, but it is still so eye-opening to experience it firsthand. If Chevy’s kennel hadn’t been tied down, it probably would have ended up a lot worse, since the point of impact was about a foot from his kennel. Now every time I get Chevy out of the kennel and hear his tail beating, it reminds me of going back there to check on him after the wreck.
It was a full-circle moment because at the time, Chevy was riding in the same kennel that I used for Gunner the last years of his life. And that is exactly why I overbuilt the kennel, to last a lifetime. Shout out to you up there, Gunner.
Addison and Chevy hunting in Pratt, Kansas, just hours after the accident. Photo by Meghan White.
Addison's truck following the wreck.
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