2014-03-13 / Front Page

Woman escapes river plunge, dog less lucky


Tuesday, March 18, 2014, 5 p.m. - Rescuers pulled an El Portal woman from the Merced River on Monday afternoon, after she swerved to avoid a coyote or dog.  Her own Chihuahua was lost in the incident, however.

Cecilia Jackson, 45, was driving a Toyota Corolla involved in the incident. She suffered a broken right ankle in the plunge. 

Deputies and members of the Mariposa County Sheriff's Office Search and Rescue Team responded to a report of a vehicle in the water about one mile east of Briceburg around 6 p.m. on March 17. The vehicle came to rest in a partially-submerged position--with its lights still on.

Rescuers set up a high-line rope system to free the woman from the vehicle. She was wet, cold and injured. Jackson was transported to John C. Fremont Hospital for treatment.

Following the plunge into the river, the woman's pet Chihuahua leaped into the water and floated away. Deputies attempted to locate the pet, but without success.

"The loss of the pet is difficult," Sheriff Doug Binnewies said. "It is unfortunate that we were unable to locate her dog. We understand that this is difficult for anyone to deal with."

Photo: Mariposa County Sheriff's OfficePhoto: Mariposa County Sheriff's Office

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This sounds very shocking.

This sounds very shocking. The dog is gone and it is the sad part of the news. I know how it feels to the pet owner.

Heartbroken for this woman,

Heartbroken for this woman, her injuries and especially the loss of her little dog. That is probably the most painful of all. Please know my prayers are with you for comfort and healing. You are loved and we want a quick recovery. And a big thank you to our Sheriff's Department and Search and Rescue for all you do and for caring.

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