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'We lost the light of our life': Sask. family mourns young boy killed in dog attack
Published Thursday, September 14, 2017 11:15AM CST
Last Updated Thursday, September 14, 2017 5:42PM CST
Family members are in mourning after a young Saskatchewan boy died following a dog attack, saying “we lost the light of our life.”
Police and paramedics responded to the incident outside a home in the small community of Riceton, southeast of Regina, shortly after 6:30 p.m. Wednesday.
RCMP say a six-year-old boy was pronounced dead at the scene. Family have identified the victim as Cameron Mushanski.
The boy’s grandfather, Dan Trelnuk, told reporters that Cameron came home from school around 4 p.m., as usual, and went inside to play.
“He liked to play Minecraft and Roblox on the phone and then he got up and he said, ‘I’m going to go and play outside,’ Trelnuk said.
“I saw him playing with his toys by the swing and bouncing on the trampoline, and I didn’t hear anything.”
Trelnuk said the family’s two Giant Alaskan Malamute dogs were in their pen at the time.
He said Cameron, whose nickname was “Goober,” usually ran up to his wife’s car when she arrived home.
“She came through the door and I said, ‘Did you see Goober?’ She said no. I said, ‘Well, what the heck?’” Trelnuk said.
“So, then she started calling him and then she saw him hanging from the fence. I went in the pen. That’s when I knew he was gone.”
Trelnuk said the dogs were both large, each weighing more than 100 pounds. He said he couldn’t walk one on a leash after having multiple back surgeries.
The family had been trying to find a new home for the dogs prior to the incident, he added.
“We were trying to find anyone that would take them,” Trelnuck said. “We couldn’t find anybody.”
He noted that Cameron and the other children in the family usually didn’t go near the dogs’ pen.
“They’d been warned away, and they knew not to go near those dogs because I didn’t trust them,” Trelnuk said.
“They have an idiosyncrasy. With those two, anything smaller than them was prey, so I didn’t trust them near kids.”
He said the dogs could easily overpower an adult.
“The only difference is an adult knows how to fight back – a little kid is defenceless,” Trelnuk said.
He told reporters that his grandson was always happy.
“Even if he got upset about something, five minutes later, he was over it and happy again,” Trelnuk said.
“And if he knew he was in the wrong, he always came to give you a hug and say he was sorry.”
He said the family is “holding” following Cameron’s tragic death.
“We lost the light of our life,” Trelnuk said.
Cameron’s aunt, Cassandra Demery, said her nephew “literally lit the room up.”
“We lost the most amazing person in all of our lives, and now we can’t get him back ever. It’s not fair, it’s just not fair,” she said.
“I’d give anything for one more day with that kid. To hear ‘I love you auntie,' 'I’ll see you tomorrow' or 'I’ll see you next weekend.’ Anything.”
A GoFundMe page set up to cover Cameron’s funeral expenses had raised nearly $4,000 as of 5:30 p.m. Thursday.
The Regina Humane Society told CTV News that both dogs have been euthanized and will be tested for rabies.
Milestone RCMP are investigating the circumstances of the incident, including what may have prompted the attack. Police say it isn’t clear whether one or both dogs were involved.
With files from CTV Regina's Dale Hunter