Flow Scales

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Sometimes a man can be a dog’s best friend, too—especially if that man can pilot a drone and a winter storm is approaching.

When a pale-coated golden retriever pup named Meadow went missing in a wooded area near her home in upstate New York, Gary and Debbie Morgan, put up reward posters detailing their missing dog’s plight.

Even though he’d never met the couple, experienced drone pilot Brian James came to the rescue. Also a skilled hiking guide, Brian felt compelled to help search for the 16-month-old.

He knew that with wintry weather likely to hit at any moment, it would be easier to spot Meadow’s near-white fur before snow began to fall.

Looking in the area where Meadow was last seen, Brian sent his drone aloft, and scanned mile after mile of forested acreage searching for the lost pooch.

The drone’s camera eventually caught sight of her—a tiny dot of white—moving between the trees. Zooming in for a close-up, he confirmed it was Meadow.

Next, Brian quickly drove to the coordinates relayed by the drone and—after a few seconds of hesitation—the retriever ran into her rescuer’s embrace. Although she’d been missing for 10 days, Meadow was unharmed and in tail-wagging good spirits.

The Morgans, who said for them the experience felt akin to losing a child, were thrilled and relieved to be reunited with their beloved pet. Overcome with emotion, the couple fought tears as they recounted the rescue mission.

“At the last second, he saw a small white dot on the forest floor… ” Gary said in an interview with ABC World News Tonight. “[We] are so grateful for Brian for showing up when he did and being able to rescue her,” said Debbie.

But the hero of the story says you don’t need a drone or hiking savvy to save the day—all it takes is the desire to make a difference.

Says James, “Everybody’s got the capability to help. You never know what will come of it.”