Hundreds of animal lovers showed up to support and honor Puppy Doe at the hour-long vigil in Quincy, MA. News crews from local stations FOX25, WBZ4, ABC5 and NECN were reporting, as well as The Boston Globe, The Boston Herald and The Patriot Ledger.
With hundreds gathered for Puppy Doe, many were accompanied by their own dogs. People walked around with signs in honor of the abused dog, while a woman handed out purple ribbons for everyone to wear. The Quincy Police Department was present, as was the Quincy Park Department.
Volunteers from area animal shelters or rescues were also present.
The organizers of the vigil were among the first to speak, urging everyone to follow the facts and not accuse innocent people of such a heinous crime. With strong emotions gripping their every word, they spoke of honoring Puppy Doe by being kind and gentle to one another. They wanted everyone to know that the good Samaritan who found Puppy Doe had named her “Sweet Pea.”
Mary Nee, President of the Animal Rescue League of Boston thanked all those involved in the animal abuse case, stating that “animal abuse can not be tolerated.” Unfortunately, while Puppy Doe's case is the most horrific case of animal cruelty that the ARL can ever remember, it is not unique; in that, in 2012 alone there were over 1,500 cases of animal abuse investigated. But Nee reminded everyone, “we must be a voice for animals.”
Norfolk County District Attorney Michael Morrissey, who lives in Quincy, spoke about how this type of criminal activity leads to crimes against persons. Morrissey described statistics that show how those who are guilty of animal cruelty go on to commit other crimes, such as 38% of those who inflict harm against an animal graduate to violent crimes against people. “This kind of cruelty diminishes us as a society,” says Morrissey, “Our society rejects this kind of cruelty and we will not tolerate this behavior.”
Massachusetts State Representative Bruce Ayers (Quincy/Randolph) introduced Massachusetts State Senator John Keenan (Norfolk and Plymouth county), State Representative Tackey Chan (Quincy), and State Representative Walter Timilty (Milton).
Ayers went on to say “animal abuse should never be justified,” and “our current animal laws are not tough enough for our animals,” which garnered a loud applause. Ayers, whose voice and emotions clearly showed how much he loves animals, echoed sentiments many animal lovers agree with. “Our pets inspire us... being a guardian of an animal is a privilege.” Ayers has pushed for tougher laws for animals, citing a need for harsher penalties for abusers.
The vigil wrapped up with a heartfelt poem authored and read by Pit Bull advocate Jeffrey Brandt, and a touching firsthand account from a real estate broker who found a dog abandoned and deceased at one of her properties that she showed.
A candlelit moment of silence followed and not even a peep was made by the (very well-behaved) pups in attendance. Brianna Grace ended the vigil performing “Angel” by Sarah McLachlan. Red heart balloons were released during the song.
It was clear to all who came to honor Puppy Doe, that not only will she live on in our hearts, but she will never be forgotten by the city of Quincy. The abusers will be found and Puppy Doe will get her justice.