Loyal dog found at the side of killed cyclist

Cyclist Killed in hit-and-run.

Police have identified the bicyclist killed in a hit-and-run accident as Joshua Laven, a 39-year-old homeless man from Massachusetts. Laven had been living in the Santa Cruz area for the past while. The Coroner’s deputies were able to notify Laven’s family members.

Laven’s dog was hurt in the accident, but is expected to fully recover from his injuries. He is being held at the Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter.

Shelters workers said if Laven’s family does not want the dog, he will be adopted by the person who found him on the roadside.

Dog found on side of highway next to deceased ownerA small dog was found by the side of a man who appears to have been fatally struck by a pick up truck while cycling on a highway in California. The Cairn Terrier mix who is described as looking like Toto from the film the Wizard of Oz, stayed by the man’s body for an estimated 12 hours.

The man was to traveling by bicycle on Highway 1, north of Wilder Ranch State Park near Davenport, California. Authorities suspect the man was struck by a car while riding his bicycle at night. The incident occurred sometime between 10 pm Thursday and 2 am Friday.

The little dog appears to have been riding in a crate attached to the bike, as authorities found a crate nearby in the debris, along with parts of a car headlight.

The dog, broken bicycle and the man were partially obscured by vegetation, but were spotted by a passerby on Friday morning. The person called 911 and California Highway Patrol arrived soon after. The man, who was around 50 years old, had no ID on him. The dog was unharmed and picked up by Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter, where he is now being held. The dog has also not yet been identified.

Story Update May 10, 2012

Ozziet has been adoptedA week after Joshua Laven was killed while cycling on a highway in Santa Cruz, his dog named Ozziet has a new home. Ozziet, a 5-year-old Cairn terrier mix, was found next to Joshua’s body refusing to leave his side last Friday.

Ozziet will be adopted by a high school friend of Joshua’s. “I’ve known Josh since I was 15,” Kimberly Day. “I’m happy to take him (Ozziet) – it’s the least I could do.” The Pacifica resident met Ozziet for the first time when she picked him up on Thursday. Kimberly is also a longtime friend of Laven’s family. Laven’s mother, Jennifer Putnam, said her son was a huge dog lover who was devoted to Ozziet.

Kimberly said she wanted the dog to be cared for somewhere close by, where Laven’s family would have close contact with his caretaker. She plans to take good care of Ozziet, but still holds out hope the little dog and Laven’s family will reunite in the future.

“All of us are kind of hoping he will go back to Josh’s family,” she said. She believes a reunion would be healing for everyone. For now, Jennifer said she hopes having Ozziet will be healing for Kimberly as well. Kimberly lost her 15-year old dog around a month ago.

Joshua Laven and Ozziet
Joshua Laven and Ozziet


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