Great-Grandfather killed while trying to rescue dog

COTTLEVILLE, MO (KPLR) – The family of a St. Charles County man is grieving after he was killed while trying to rescue a dog.

Seventy-eight-year-old Richard Kurtz was mowing the lawn at his Cottleville home when he spotted his best friend’s dog dart across Highway N, near Long Wheat Road.

“He loved animals, he loved dogs,” says Kurtz’s sister, Kathleen Tuttle, “and he got killed running across the street to retrieve a dog. And he picked it up, the neighbors helped him, across the road, and he was holding the dog in his arms coming back when he got hit.”

O’Fallon Police say both he and the dog died at the scene.

Driving eastbound, that stretch of Highway N has a slight incline, making it difficult to see what’s ahead, especially with no traffic lights, or crosswalks.

O’Fallon Police Officer Diana Damke says, “Right at this point, the investigation is ongoing, so we’re not going to speculate as to whether there will be any charges issued towards the driver of the vehicle.”

Meanwhile, Tuttle and the rest of their family are devastated by his sudden loss.  The vivacious 78 year-old was making plans to travel to New Mexico and Arizona, and was anxiously awaiting the arrival of his third great-grandchild.

Kurtz worked in the family business as a landscape architect, and in 1977, won an award for his work at the White House.  In his spare time, he loved to carve wood and learn the latest technologies to stay in touch with his large family.

Tuttle adds, “Just devastated. He’s the first one of us five siblings, and we’d always joke about it, which one of us was going to be the first one to go, and you don’t know. It’s just God’s timing. You don’t know.”

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