Diamond in the Rough

Family Receives Miracle Just in Time for Christmas


By Carlos Padilla


It took approximately 3-1/2 months –as well as a lot of prayers, tears and hope– but in the end, the rough desert of Sierra County finally produced Diamond, a young female Labrador retriever who had been missing since a horrific crash on Interstate 25.

Many elements came together in concert to reunite Diamond with her humans, including a couple who live in Lakeshore Highlands who found Diamond in the desert near their home, local animal care professionals, social media, and a friend of the boys’ who saw Diamond’s photo on The Herald’s Facebook page.


That horrific crash took place on Labor Day –Monday, Sept. 1– when 16-year-old Dylan and his 18-year-old brother, Dakota Rivers, were traveling along Interstate 25 from Hatch to their home in the Albuquerque area in an SUV. The two brothers were traveling with their young female black lab, Diamond, when they lost control of the vehicle near Milepost 98. The Jeep rolled over and crashed, badly injuring everyone in it.

Dylan was ejected through the windshield and suffered from a collapsed lung, several broken bones and other injuries after being thrown approximately 30 feet from the vehicle. Dakota suffered from severe injuries all over his body, too. Diamond was also injured when she was ejected. Traumatized and in shock, Diamond ran from the scene and couldn’t be stopped.

For a time, it look as if Diamond would remain lost forever. Dakota and Dylan’s family members made repeated pleas to the Herald’s Facebook page for the public to keep an eye out for Diamond, and asking for prayers for the brothers.


Almost three months after the crash, Stevi and John Carey of Lakeshore Highlands discovered a young, emaciated and injured black lab wandering around their home around Thanksgiving, and took her in, cared for her and brought her back to health. On Dec. 10, Stevi contacted Eliana Aubin of the Sierra County Humane Society, asking her to help the couple find the human family of the well-behaved and loving little female dog they had recently found.

To read the rest of this article, call 575/894-2143 for an e-subscription.


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