Novelist/Good Samaritan saves dog hit by car, needs $; bonus, a 5-star book review

Dog hit by car; owner refuses to pay for dog’s broken leg; novelist adopts dog, seeks help raising money for

Saving Ludo’s Leg


Here is the novelist’s story:

Adriana Hartelt Boettcher on Facebook, June 7, at 8:15pm ·

What I at first mistook for a black trash bag in the eastbound lane of Highway 30 was instead a black Lab, struggling to crawl out of the lane after its leg had been broken by a car. Trash bags don’t sit up. I had been going west, but was turned around and blocking the dog within a few seconds. A truck full of guys stopped and helped me block traffic, give the dog water and contact the Tama County sheriff, who was going to put the dog down. I said no. Not today. Instead, the three guys in the truck helped me load the dog into my car and off to Marshalltown vet we went. Only a broken leg and some abrasions and the dog will be fine soon.
I left for my work drive early today, a half hour earlier than I needed to, drove the slower, scenic route and was right where I needed to be to help this dog. Miracles are all about the timing but also something else. I’ve struggled for years to think that I make lives better of those around me. Sometimes, I wonder. Today I felt a glimmer of hope. Saving others can save us, too. And, on Gonzo’s birthday to boot. Thank you, God.

The cop said what?

Apparently the cops see so many dogs on that stretch of road hit by cars or injured because near Tama the owners let the dogs run loose and without collars, so they are now desensitized. However… this particular dog is my own personal starfish. I cannot throw back all the starfish, but I can save this one.

Doggy update, June 11

Adriana Hartelt Boettcher

It took a few days to get things sorted but the previous owner relinquished custody. Doggy is having his surgery on a splintered leg and hairline pelvis fracture. This Friday (or possibly next Monday after a few days recovery), he will come home with me for his forever home… because he has no one else and because it seemed fated. His name will be Ludo (a combination of Lucky- because he IS, Bandit- his old name, and a name ending in O as an homage to his late and great older brother Gonzo). Hence, Ludo. Let me know when you want to meet him. 🙂

Doggy update, June 13

Adriana Hartelt Boettcher on Facebook · GoFundMe

Surgery day is today! Thank you so much to all who helped yesterday; I am humbled and indebted. I’ll pay you back somehow, someday. We’ve reached the halfway mark of the plating surgery cost. Anyone still interested in Operation Rescue Ludo’s Leg, I’m so grateful for your help. Thank you.

More at the GoFundMe site:

Ludo has a splintered leg and hairline pelvis fracture and because of the cost to treat, $1,600, the former owners (who called him Bandit) decided not to. The cost to plate his leg is high, but I’ve rarely met a dog so deserving of a second chance. He is having surgery this week and will come home with me post-recovery, to his new forever home.
Paying for his treatment is a choice I made along with the decision to adopt him. However, any help with his surgery would be very much appreciated as it was not a budgeted expense or planned event, just a miracle of timing for a gentle, lucky dog. Thank you.

This campaign is trending!

$855 of $1,600 goal met

at the time of this post, Raised by 14 people in 23 hours

No, wait –

$910 raised by 17 people in 24 hours!

Donate Now

Created June 12, 2018

If anyone can relate to the horror of a dog owner failing to keep his pet safe, then refusing him emergency vet care, it’s @rhondak of @tarc. Let someone else foot the bill. Or just put the dog down.

Bravo, Adrianna, for stepping up to the plate!

While $1600 is a large sum of money, and adopting a dog will entail even more expenditures for however many years to come, who could just drive on buy and leave this creature to fend for himself? I could write reams about the sanctity of life, our animal companions included.

Small world:

Seven years ago, I reviewed this good Samaritan’s novel!


“Lights in a Black Forest” by Martena Warner

For fifty years, Heinrich Warner chose to forget his past. At night, he dreamed alive again the ghosts of his childhood. By day, he chose to forget them all. But, ghosts do not stay hidden forever, especially in the mind of an old man who can no longer remember what is real…

Her father inspired the fictional version of a boy in post-World War II Germany, exiled from what was then Silesia and is now part of Poland, starting life over again in the United States.

Meet novelist and good Samaritan Adriana Hartelt Boettcher


Martena Warner is the pseudonym for Iowa native Adriana Anne Catherine Hartelt Boettcher. Martena has lived most of her life within twenty miles of where she was born, even raising her children in the same small town where she grew up. Rather than a deterrent to her writing, Martena feels her familiarity with a place and its people is an asset. Although she has been a lifelong writer, “Lights in a Black Forest” is her first novel.

Another Way You can Help

is by voting Yes, this review was helpful – Better yet, spend $3 and buy the book! “Lights in a Black Forest” by Martena Warner

Carol Kean ~ VINE VOICE~
5.0 out of 5 stars a father’s loss, a daughter’s shining memorial
December 6, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase

Beautiful tribute to a father who suffered loss of homeland under the Nazis – and no, not as a displaced Jew, but as a German civilian. When the Red Army invaded, millions of Silesians became homeless in an instant, unless they were gunned down first, or brutally gang-raped. But the novel isn’t about the atrocity of war, per se; it’s a daughter’s search to understand her father, who migrated to Iowa after the war, and stopped at the town with the “Germans welcome” sign. Anti-German sentiment in the U.S. was bad enough after WWI, worse after WWII, but not in Warner’s fictional Iowa town. This novel is rich with countless details that define Iowa, our diverse ethnicity, the traditions our pioneer settlers handed down – thrift, for example, persists in the gene pool, and Warner’s anecdotes are sure to bring tears of laughter or winces of recognition from readers.

The greatest part of the story is a boy who lost his little sister in the woods the day of the Red Army’s invasion of Silesia. The novel opens in the point of view of an elderly, widowed Heinrich who’s losing his memory to dementia. Some days he barely remembers his own name, but he never forgets his ghosts. While he grows old, they remain young, frozen in time at age 14, or whatever age he last knew them. The whole first chapter is riveting and powerful, especially when Heinrich regresses to the little boy who tells himself “I didn’t do anything wrong,” but he hasn’t managed to convince himself of that even at the end of his days. Most of the novel is told from his daughter’s viewpoint. Anna Maria is a young stepmother with an inattentive husband who leaves full-time care of his daughter to her, but her father becomes more of a handful than the toddler, and she faces that awful family crisis: the nursing home. She also searches for the real story behind her father’s fear of the woods, his missing family members left behind in a land that ceased to be Germany and became Poland, and the meaning of that haunting refrain she’s heard since childhood. It sounded like a nickname, Vo-iss Lucy. As an adult, she hears the correct German words but her need to make sense of them makes Lucy all the more tantalizing. To say more would be a plot spoiler. Let’s just say that the answer to Ayn Rand’s “Who is John Galt” had nowhere near the impact of Heinrich’s Lucy.

Well researched, honestly and passionately told, this story should not be missed. It’s an important addition to the scarce literature on how German civilians suffered the sins of their government, how they walked their own Trail of Tears as heart-rending as that of the Cherokees in our own land, and how, if not for the death of one person in time of war, and the survival of another, countless people we know and love today would not exist. I didn’t say it right, but Warner does, and she brings the pain of war home to us a generation after the fact, on a new land. But as she quotes Faulkner at the outset, “The past is not dead. It isn’t even past.” And from page one, Heinrich’s ghosts will haunt you too.

0 out of 5 stars Lights in a Black Forest
By Doug Beard on December 12, 2011
Format: Paperback

This book will change you. Unless you witnessed first hand the mass hatred, torture, death, and displacement of ordinary human beings during WWII, you will be moved by this debut novel. The story centers around Heinrich Warner, a boy during the war, whose experiences still affected him and those around him 50 years after the war ended and 40 years after he emigrated to Iowa.

When I began reading the book, I read because of my acquaintance with the author and read 30 to 40 pages a night. By the end, the nightly page count was around 100 and I read because I was drawn into it. Beyond the book, I was motivated to spend hours reading about German, Polish, and Silesian history and geography.

The way the author smoothly eased into her disclaimer and explanation pages at the end was extremely clever.

2 people found this helpful

About carolkean

novelist, reviewer, editor, book critic for Liberty Island and Perihelion Science Fiction; native prairie/guerilla gardener; champion of liberty, indie authors & underdogs; one of the top two reviewers in Editors &Preditors Poll 2015; Amazon Vine, NetGalley Top Reviewer
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