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Former Langley mayor's pooch safe after rescue

Neil Colburn walks his dog, Karly, on the public boat launch at South Whidbey Harbor on Monday after the dog was rescued from the bluff. South Whidbey Fire/EMS sent its marine response unit to retrieve the dog from the beach after the bluff was deemed too steep for volunteers to walk down from the Edgecliff neighborhood of Langley.  - Ben Watanabe / The Record
Neil Colburn walks his dog, Karly, on the public boat launch at South Whidbey Harbor on Monday after the dog was rescued from the bluff. South Whidbey Fire/EMS sent its marine response unit to retrieve the dog from the beach after the bluff was deemed too steep for volunteers to walk down from the Edgecliff neighborhood of Langley.
— image credit: Ben Watanabe / The Record

A frightened and seemingly stuck dog was rescued after a long day of yelping and barking from the Edgecliff bluff Monday afternoon.

Karly, the 4-year-old chocolate lab/pit bull mix, was unharmed after chasing a rabbit down the bluff and getting stuck between the bluff and the beach in Langley. Owner Neil Colburn, a former Langley mayor, heard the dog in the afternoon and eventually South Whidbey Fire/EMS was called to assist in the pooch’s procurement.

“I had to call her a lot before she made any noise,” said Candace Culver, Colburn’s wife.

While the dog is normally confined to their yard, he was loose at the time, spotted the bounding rabbit and instinct took over, Neil Colburn said.

South Whidbey Fire/EMS deployed its marine response vessel to the beach by 3:05 p.m., and by 3:15 the dog was retrieved by volunteer firefighter Brandon Callahan, with fellow volunteer Kim Boenish and Neil Colburn also in the boat.

“They were outstanding,” he said of the firefighters and Deputy Chief Mike Cotton.

Colburn’s wife, upon hearing the call on Cotton’s radio that the dog was safe and sound, was relieved that NAS Whidbey Island did not send its high-angle, rope rescue team all the way to Langley for her dog.

“I’m glad,” Culver said. “I personally didn’t want to see the Navy rappelling down the yard.”

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