Man Killed Moving Injured Rabbit Off the Road Deserved a Happier Ending

This sounds like my kind of guy. A 79-year-old man named William Kieren was driving on a highway in Wyoming when he reportedly saw an injured rabbit. So he did what any real man would do -- he stopped to tend to the poor critter. But unfortunately that act of kindness for animals cost him his life.

Police say that Kieren was either near or on the center line when he was struck by a car. It killed him. Nor did the rabbit make it out okay. Apparently highway patrol had to put the creature down.

Ugh. No silver lining to this story. Or is there? At least he died doing a good deed? I know. A stretch. But I can totally relate because I would probably take a huge personal risk to save an animal too. In fact, I have. I've run into traffic after a wayward stray pit bull. I've climbed into dangerous construction areas for a meowing lost cat. I've done it all. Luckily, none of it has killed me. YET.

Sometime I wonder if it's worth it. You read stories about people crashing their cars after veering to avoid hitting a dog or deer. But your instincts just take over. You don't want to hurt an animal.

If only poor Kieren had been able to get the rabbit to the side of the road. PETA's website has some advice for tending an injured or stray animal:

Be prepared to help if you encounter an animal in distress: Keep an animal rescue kit in your car at all times. The kit should include a carrier, leash, towel, treats, wet and dry cat food, and directions to local animal control agencies, emergency veterinary hospitals, and wildlife rehabilitators. Carry one of those fold-up sunshades too. It can be used to corral a wild animal into a carrier or away from a dangerous area.

I just can't stop thinking about how this poor man lost his life. So many people would have just driven by, but he didn't. I wonder if the person who hit him will face any charges. Could he or she really have not seen a man in the middle of the road?

Sigh. Life is so unfair sometimes. Bless this poor man and the rabbit too. Hopefully they are together somewhere over the Rainbow Bridge.

Do you brake for injured animals?


Image via Mostly Dans/Flickr

animals, death, in the news


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Lovin... LovinJerseyMama

I totally break for animals and am also the crazy woman in the street trying to rescue them if they've been injured. Of course I do that as safely as possible so I don't cause accidents. I hit a bird once as it flew across the street, hit my breaks and went back to pick him up. He hung out in my lap till I got home then pooped on my hand and flew away lol. Guess he wasn't hurt that bad! 

knitt... knittykitty99

Helping an animal is admirable, but it is more important to keep people safe.  Not only does his family suffer, but someone has to live with having hit and killed him.  That man endangered everyone on the road.  His act could have cost others their lives as well.

LuvMy... LuvMyDandD

The person who killed him obviously strayed pretty far into oncoming traffic.

nonmember avatar cathy

Bless his heart! I would have stopped too. It is better to die doing something loving and compassionate, than to die drueling down the front of your shirt in a nursing home. Rest in Peace, kind man.

zombi... zombiemommy916

I live on a back road and in the summer, I get out of my truck to move turtles AND snakes (non-venomous of course)...I moved a 7ft black snake last July!! No way could I let it get me nuts, I don't care...

Paula Plante

what a wonderful man. I have rescued many animals. I stopped rush hour traffic to rescue a small dog that was sitting right in the middle of the highway. I also ran onto the highway to chase a dog off; unfortunately the dog caused a serious accident before I could get him off. I also called the police for an injured duck that was on a highway. i could never let an animal suffer or die due to circumstances they cannot control.

nonmember avatar Julia

My heart breaks for this man, his family & friends. He's my kind of human. I also stop to help injured animals and do all that I can to stay safe so I can live another day to care for my own animals. You're either a person who stops to help or not; it's in our DNA. I've saved rabbits, squirrels, birds, dogs, cats, snakes, frogs, horses, and even a cow! Stay safe out there.

nonmember avatar Gary coulombe

I guess he,s gone to a PETA place!

Juliet Jeske

Sometimes you can actually be killed even if you hit the poor animal.  A deer hitting a car in the right way can total it, and go right through the windshield and kill the driver.  It is such a shame, as the poor animals have no intention of hurting anyone, and the drivers flat out don't see them until it is too late.  I went to school in rural Missouri and accidents like this happened all the time.  What a sad story.  

nonmember avatar Joy

I have saved many animals I found on the road, including two wild rabbits. I stop and and give tarrapins a lift on across if I can. I once dragged an alligator snapper out of the road with a stck; she helped by biting the stick and not turning loose. I have been on the road a lot and it always saddens me to see so many animals dead on or beside it. It also makes me really mad when people try to hit them, and that happens. I have seen it several times. I do try to be safe. I have stood helplessly beside the road while a truck ran over a tarrapin I was going to move--apparently the driver didn't see the turtle OR me waving and pointing at it. This story is ve ry sad. I tremendously admire this man for helping when too many wouldn't try. Like the author, I hope he and the rabbit are in a better place over on the other side. He certainly deserves it for his compassion.

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