Jackie Haeflinger, 58, was walking her dog Violet on Wednesday morning when the dog got off its leash and ran into the street as the garbage truck was backing up.
Haeflinger tried to grab the dog from behind the truck. The driver, not realizing she was there, hit and rolled over Haeflinger, crushing her.
Although the other sanitation worker had yelled for the driver to stop, he apparently could not hear her through the noise.
After the horrific accident, police picked up Violet from the sidewalk only a few feet from her owner’s body. Eight-year-old Boston Terrier Violet was not harmed, and is currently staying with a neighbor.
Neighbors were upset and saddened by the news. Haeflinger and Violet were well known in the Chelsea neighborhood. Haeflinger could be seen walking her beloved dog every day in the morning and at night.
And her friends knew that Haeflinger would have done anything to save Violet.
One neighbor told cbs 2 “It’s heartbreaking knowing that we’ll no longer see her face around here.”
Haeflinger worked for New York University in its events office.
The Director of Public Affairs at NYU, Philip Lentz, said in a statement “She was a devoted, long-time member of the NYU community whom many of us — myself included — knew well and admired for not only for her hard work and exacting standards but for her commitment to make every NYU event warm, gracious, and memorable for students, families, and faculty. Her family and loved ones are in our prayers. We are all coming to terms with the sudden news. We shall miss her.”
Even those who never met Haeflinger can appreciate the strong bond and love she had for her small dog. Sincere condolences go out to the family and friends of Ms. Haeflinger.