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UC Police Honor 2 Men Who Stopped Pit Bull Attack

UC police this week presented "heroism" awards to two men who fought off two pit bull mixes that attacked a 6-year-old girl at University Village in Albany on Aug. 23. The wife of one of the men offers her perspective and brief video from the

[Editor's note: With the writer's permission, Patch is pleased republish this post from the Vinecdote website of Michelle Locke, longtime AP Berkeley correspondent and now a contributing writer for AP and other publications.]

By Michelle Locke

Friends, today we are taking a little break from food, wine and travel to talk about another important component of this website, Mr. Vinecdote, aka my husband of 27 years Pang Ho. (Yeah, as a matter of fact I DID vow I’d never marry a man with a funny name. What can I say, today I write to you as a proud Ho.)

Anyway, Pang has long been my hero, but this week some other folks recognized his sterling qualities. Specifically, he got a Citizen’s Award from the University of California, Berkeley, police department for his role in stopping a dog attack.

It happened last August near the field where Pang and some of his friends play their weekly soccer games. The two dogs, pit-bull mixes who were off-leash, suddenly attacked a six-year-old girl who was walking with her little brother. Pang and another soccer player, Terry Kelley-Farias, ran over and each man grabbed a dog and pulled it away from the child. (Terry had to actually pry his dog’s jaws apart to get the animal to let go.) The girl required hospitalization but was not critically injured.

I found out about it later that night when Pang mumbled something about stopping a dogfight.

“What?”

“Two pit bulls were attacking a girl so me and another guy went over and stopped them.”

(To be 100 percent honest with you relations were a teensy bit strained at the time on account of someone being a total killjoy on our vacation the week before. We might go so far as to say the silent treatment was in effect and, in fact, had a few more days to run, but, sheesh, there are times when a person has to make exceptions.)

“Whoa!” I said. “Pit bulls? In the middle of an attack? Weren’t you scared you’d get bitten?”

“Well,” he said, “I was a bit worried.”

And that is Mr. Vinecdote for you. Not so much with the drama.

Naturally, I wanted to alert the media, but Pang wouldn’t have it, insisting “it was nothing.” But the UC police, who had jurisdiction since it happened on UC property, weren’t going to let it go at that and they recognized Pang and Terry with Citizen Awards.

Here’s a news story about the attack from patch.com. And here is the follow-up with the dogs being apprehended. Above is a video I put together of Tuesday’s award ceremony led by UC Berkeley Police Chief Mitchell Celaya.

It was a fun and heartwarming event; the little girl, all recovered now, and her family were there and the little girl’s brother turned out to have my attitude toward public speaking. First he agreed to say a few words, then he abruptly announced, “I’ve changed my mind,” and then he was carried out in tears of mortification. Been there, done that.

So it was all good, except for one slightly disturbing turn of events. As we were getting ready to leave I gave Mr. V’s outfit the wifely eye but he stopped me before I could say so much as “Crocs.” “Don’t tell me what to wear,” he said firmly. “I’m wearing what I want.”

UC Berkeley citizen-honoring, confidence-boosting police, I fear you’ve created a monster.

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Berkeley Patch welcomes guest columns from members of the community. Those interested in contributing can write to berkeley@patch.com. 

Sarahí Arriaga October 20, 2012 at 02:33 AM
I loves the post, it's entertaining and fun at times! Congratulations for the two brave men!
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