North Carolina

TV reporter stops livestream to save Daisy, an injured dog in dangerous NC floodwaters

Julie Wilson, a reporter for WTVD, handed her phone off during a Facebook Live broadcast of Hurricane Florence in New Bern, North Carolina so she could rescue a therapy dog named Daisy from the floodwaters.
Julie Wilson, a reporter for WTVD, handed her phone off during a Facebook Live broadcast of Hurricane Florence in New Bern, North Carolina so she could rescue a therapy dog named Daisy from the floodwaters. ABC News/Broadcast screenshot

As floodwaters from Hurricane Florence washed down the streets of New Bern, N.C., Friday morning, a TV reporter from WTVD handed off her camera and jumped into the story herself when an injured therapy dog became separated from his family in the flooded streets, ABC News reported.

Julie Wilson was in the city when Florence crossed into land Friday morning. The coastal city was inundated and hundreds were rescued as storm churned on, the Charlotte Observer reported.

While on the ground in knee-high floodwaters, Wilson was interviewing residents and working alongside boat crews who were moving through the streets. She was broadcasting on Facebook Live when she met a woman named Tasha, about four and a half minutes in.

“My dogs, I’ve gotta get my babies,” Tasha says.

“Do you think that is safe?” Wilson asks.

“I have no choice,” she responds.

“Do you think that is safe?” Wilson asks again.

“It’s my daughter’s therapy dog, I have no choice.”

Wilson waits outside while Tasha goes inside and comes out with a black rottweiler, which she leaves on the porch for a moment.

“Folks this is not a joke,” Wilson says. “If you can get out” — she shudders — “If you can get out, get out.”

Tasha comes out and leads the dog, named Daisy, through the water. The water is up to Daisy’s head when Wilson asks if they can pick her up.

Tasha picks up Daisy and sloshes through the water, but drops her down into the water after a few steps. For a moment, Daisy stays put. Then people begin shouting Daisy’s name and the camera goes wild. Daisy had started moving away from everyone in a dangerous situation.

“Daisy! Daisy! Daisy girl! No no no,” Wilson says. “I got her, come on baby girl.”

WIlson asks Tasha to come back, hands the phone to her, counts to three and lifts Daisy up out of the water.

“Let’s get you out, I got you.” For more than 30 seconds of broadcast, Wilson sloshes through the water with Daisy before finally handing her over to Tasha when they get to shallower water. After the rescue, Wilson says everyone is doing their best, then jumps right back in reporting the rescue efforts of others on the street for another half hour before ending the livestream.



A bystander captured part of the rescue from another angle, showing Wilson carrying Daisy through the water. (Wilson is the one wearing the orange jacket.)

The video was seen more than 75,000 times by Saturday morning, and many commented, praising Wilson for her role in saving the dog.

Florence is now a tropical storm and expected to dump huge amounts of rain across the Carolinas in the coming days, bringing winds of 50 mph. Hundreds of thousands of people were without power Saturday morning.

Follow more of our reporting on Hurricane Florence

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