NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — An MTA employee was recognized Tuesday after saving a scared dog in the subway.
Nine-year-old Lucy looked a little bashful while reuniting with her rescuer, MTA employee Jose Bonilla.READ MORE: NYC Mayoral Primary: Eric Adams Leads 1st Round, Maya Wiley And Kathryn Garcia Neck And Neck
Perhaps she was remembering the grueling chase she led him on before he was finally able to catch her.
“It was such a day. I can’t believe it. Down from the eighth floor, through the lobby, past the doorman, across the West Side Highway, into the train station,” said Molly Malone.
Lucy belongs to Malone’s mother, who was in the hospital this past Saturday.
The emotional support pup escaped from her Battery Park City home while a friend was dog-sitting. Lucy somehow ended up at the Chambers Street subway station and spent the next 10 hours running herself haggard up and down the 1 line.
“Train, traffic, third rail, all the sharp objects, there’s too many to list. It’s remarkable that she was able to survive that long,” said Bonilla, who is an MTA train service supervisor.
As CBS2’s Christina Fan reports, one of Lucy’s first stops was the South Ferry subway station, where Bonilla had just started his shift.
He says it took an all-day team effort to track Lucy’s location while coordinating with the rail control center to make sure no trains ran her over.READ MORE: Manhattan DA Primary: Alvin Bragg Has Slight Lead Over Tali Farhadian Weinstein In Too-Close-To-Call Race
Finally near the end of his day, he found the exhausted pup at the 34th Street station.
“I called out her name. She laid down in front of me. I petted her. I picked her up. There was a bite involved at that moment, and I was able to put her on the 2 train, right into Molly’s hands,” Bonilla said.
On Tuesday, a grateful Malone thanked Bonilla in person, watching as the MTA awarded him a commendation for his rescue.
Lucy attended, too, her paw recovering from a broken nail.
“In the middle of this pandemic, I feel like you always need to look for the good guys, right, and he’s definitely one of them and this is a happy ending,” Malone said.
That may not have happened without Bonilla’s persistence.
This was not Bonilla’s first rescue. He previously saved a cat from the transit system that was lost for about a week.MORE NEWS: NYC Comptroller Primary: Brad Lander Takes Lead Over Corey Johnson
CBS2’s Christina Fan contributed to this report.