Preacher Risks Life to Save Dog from Icy Pond

The rescue happened by chance when a Wisconsin pastor stepped outside to make a cell phone call and heard frantic dog barks.

On March 21, 2014, Reverend Wayne DeVrou, Senior Pastor for the First Reformed Church in Oostburg, Wisconsin, risked his life by attempting a pet rescue on an icy pond. His heroic actions saved the life of a 100 lbs. Mastiff that fell through the thin ice.

The rescue happened by chance. DeVrou was visiting his mother and needed to make a cell phone call, but due to poor cell phone reception in the home, the pastor stepped outside and crossed the road to get a better connection.

After doing so he heard barks coming from a nearby private marina and upon investigating he discovered a pit bull/lab mix on shore barking desperately. In the frozen water was the Mastiff trying to survive.

Pit bull/lab mix (left) and the Mastiff (right) that Reverend Wayne DeVrou rescued from an icy pond.
Pit bull/lab mix (left) and the Mastiff (right) that Reverend Wayne DeVrou rescued from an icy pond.


According to, DeVrou ran back home, picked up rope and returned to the marina to try to save the pet.

As he tried walking on the icy surface to reach the canine, he fell through the ice. Yet the determined man continued his mission and reached the large dog. The preacher helped the pet out of the freezing waters then pulled himself out.

After the large dog was safe on shore, the churchman brought both dogs back to his mother’s house and warmed them up. Neither the man nor the pet needed medical attention.

Later that same day DeVrou posted pictures of both dogs on the Leelanau County Sheriff’s Office (LCSO) Facebook page to try to reunite them with their owner. Hours later a Peshawbestown resident contacted the Sheriff’s Office and was reunited with her pets.


5 thoughts on “Preacher Risks Life to Save Dog from Icy Pond

  1. So happy the two buddy are safe and that their families came for them…I hope they are more careful with your beautiful pets. Regardless of how they got out please be careful especially around water. Thanks so much to the Rev you are an amazing pet hero.. I don’t know how you got that big 100lb boy out of the water soaking wet but thanks a bunch.

  2. so beautiful. I wish I could share in your seneimtnt. I am longing for warm weather and seeing buds peeking out of the frozen ground. still, these photos are so beautiful and melancholy.

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