I Will Meet you at the Bridge


I am writing today as Hoomama, not as Hero Dog Thurston. It is with a very broken heart that I have to tell everyone that Thurston got his wings at about 5:15 this morning (Christmas Eve). He had been hospitalized over Thanksgiving with a close call with bloat. This morning he was distended and in severe pain.  I got him to the emergency vet at 4:15am and his stomach had already flipped. He was in severe pain. The vet discouraged me from considering surgery as there was little chance of success. He was considered an “elderly gentleman”. He was very much his own dog and he did NOT die from his cancer. He had a WONDERFUL LIFE with his Hoomama and his brother – “that other dog, Raffie”- 8 years, 3 months and  24 days. He lived 2 years 8 months and 1 day after his cancer diagnosis and 2 years 7 months and 12 days as a Tripawd! He died peacefully in my arms with me thanking him for being my dog and telling him that “Da Mama loves da Puppy soooo much! I will love this hero dog forever! He was truly an inspiration to all who knew and loved him. Rest in peace, Big Boy. I will meet you at the Bridge!

Author: thurston

I am Gloria, a retired RN and Single Pawrent of Thurston Howell IV, a 6 year old St. Bernard who was diagnosed with osteosarcoma 4/22/18 and amputated 5/11/18. He has finished 4 rounds of Carboplatin and is enrolled on a Study at University of Wisconsin at Madison. We want to share our story with others. Thurston's journal of osteosarcoma treatment

9 thoughts on “I Will Meet you at the Bridge”

  1. I am so sorry about Thurston. I have read all of your post, and fell in love with Thurston like so many here. That boy could not have been more loved❤

  2. Ohhh Gloria, my dear, dear Gloria. I am sobbing truly sobbing right now. Cannot believe what zi am reading. Just crushed, absolutely crushed. Gutted and broken. I am so sorry….cannot even velieve it. I’m be back sweet Gloria
    Always …

  3. Im downright sobbing. Gloria, you were/ are the bestest mama any furbaby could ask for. You kicked cancer in the teeth and said no freaking way!!
    I know how much your babies mean to you, and I know you would move heaven and earth for them.
    I know Thurston is watching over you from above. I wish i could say something to ease your grief but only time can do that.
    Thank you for sharing the special parts of your life. It was an act of love and will help so many giant tripawds in the future.
    Sending you many hugs and so much love.
    Jackie and Huck❤

  4. I’m so sorry for your big and brave boy! It really breaks my heart!
    Thurston story’s has been one of the most important stories in here that gave me the strenght to try fight cancer with my girl! You are such an ispiration to me! So strong and lovely mom!
    He’ll always watch you from above..
    Very big hugs and love from me 💖

  5. Oh my dog! Gloria, I burst into tears when I saw the news, I am shattered that our hero got his wings. I can’t even imagine….You have my deepest condolences and love coming to you from across the miles. Thurston was one of a kind and even chose how he was going to transition, he did NOT let that cancer win and he died a hero, on his own terms like you said. What an incredible boy.

    Thurston will forever be a legend among Tripawds big and small, always showing us that there is so much hope in front of us when we step onto the Tripawd journey. Thank you so much for allowing us to be part of yours and sharing your life together. There is so much he will continue teaching everyone.

    May you and Raffie find comfort in each other and know that the Christmas star is brighter now because of your incredible angel. I know that he and Wyatt and all the angel dogs are together and eating all the Blue Bunny ice cream their hearts desire.

    Love you!!!!!

  6. Years ago Martha (The Oa,town Pack) sent me this poem when my Happy Hannah transitioned. Grief can make you feel like you’re going crazy and can never reclaim yourself again. Actually, we never will be the”same” after sharing our lives with these enlightened Souls…but in a good way. We “transition ” and evolve towards our own lath on enlightenment, But in the meantime, this poem helped me feel “less crazy” with grief.

    With love and light
    Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too

    Sweep the floor

    Look out the window


    Make a cup of tea and some toast

    But then not eat them

    Change the sheets on the bed

    Try to sing

    Start to cry

    Forget what day it is

    Stumble into a corner of the floor and hold your knees tightly


    Pull yourself together

    Make another cup of tea and this time drink it

    Look out a different window

    Stare at that spot on the floor where your dog used to stretch out, languid and happy, his paws twitching as he raced across sleep meadows and into dream ravines filled with moss and ferns and the scent of foxes

    Look for the Kleenex

    Use toilet paper instead

    Wander around the house, your heart like a damned anvil in your chest

    Heat up leftovers

    Push them around the plate before leaving the entire thing in the sink

    Look for what is not there

    Hear things

    Feel the forgotten fur beneath your fingertips

    Feel the forgetting begin

    Hold a memory, any memory, bright and shining, soft and sad, smelling of wet fur and leaves, with a whisker there and muddy paw prints left on the stairs, of a walk of a hike of a trip to the park with a treat and a bone and a belly rub snacks stolen off the counter and tug of war and the squeaky toy a glance of complicity in play with your hand on head with tail wagging and breath misting in the morning light or the moon over the trees while an owl croons ears are pricked and nose to the ground sniffing, sniffing, sniffing following the invisible trail to its joyful finding

    Put on your pajamas

    Turn around three times before you curl up by the rope toy and find yourself chasing the echo of a bark into a night that will never end

    Grow a tail

    Catherine Young 11.27.12

  7. Cant tell you how many times I’ve come back here to try and find some words to let you know what Thurston means to us. Each time I leave the screen blank.

    This time some thoughts started to form….but they aren’t worthy of trying to describe Thurston and what he means to us.

    How do you pay homage to a dog with a huge personality so big he lit up our hearts with joy and laughter everytime he posted. I broke out I into a smile the seond I saw; “It’s meeeeee…..
    I knew I would be in for fun and laughter!

    Yes, you had to type for him, but you two were so in sync hat you knew EXACTLY what he was thinking, even before he “said” it. You gave voice to his thoughts, and they were definitely his thoughts……his wit….his humor!!

    The conribtions you two have made to this community on so many levels are limitless and vast. Because of the genuis wit and humor of Thurston our over all well being improved because of the light hearted way he approached
    Every aspect of this journey. With every post, we earned life lessons from him and experienced our Soul’s growth as a result.

    And make no mistake avput it, Thurston’s legacy of hope and inspiration and as a role model for what’s possible will be legendary here eternally.

    The way you two forged through everyday of this journey with grace and humor and courage touched is all. You ALWAYS made every moment count…ALWAYS! You made everyday a celebration. You BOTH showed us so much about how to LIVE and how to always focus on the pawsitive. And something you both did so well……how to find humor in every challenge.

    My words are so inadequate and can never express how much Thurston and his hoomams mean to us. His life mattered! His presence here in his earth clothes had a positive impact on us all in so many ways.

    And yes, the Christmas Starhelped to show Thirston the way back home……and to all The Blue Bunny Ice Cream he can eat!! Wheelbarrows full and it never, ever has to share it with anybody!!

    I can’t wait to hear how Thirston connects with you. And make mo mistake about he will and it will be in a very specific Thurston way! He’s probably already connected with the other dog Raffie, so pay attention!

    With all my heart, tha k you for shari g Thurston with us and with so ma y other lucky Souls. He will NEVER be forgotten!

    Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

    1. Thank you sooo much for those beautiful kind words. Thurston was totally my heart and I will love him forever! It makes me sooo hoppy to know how he touched others’ lives and that he made a difference!
      You, too are a bright spot and a legend to the Tripawds Community and we love you right back!! After every single post we made, Thurston and I would sit and wait, checking every half hour watching for YOUR comments! We love you sooo much! We were soo excited to SEE you on the live chat. Thurston’s thoughts were always his own I was only his secretary! HE THOUGHT YOU ROCK!!
      That other dog, Raffie and I hope to continue Thurston’s mission and we are actively seeking another Tripawd to help us do just that! Hopefully one without cancer, tho. He and I have spent the last 4 days trying to clean up the hair, slime and slobber all over the walls that is Thurston’s legacy! Raffie is going to take over Thurston’s Instagram – right now it’s “3leggedthurston” on Instagram and I am on Facebook but I don’t post often. Please, please, please keep in touch with me and Raffie.
      Our pal Winnie is Thurston’s friend! She is also a St. Bernard and had soooo many of Thurston’s characteristics – even the split across her nose. She started treatment for osteosarcoma a few weeks ago after amputation and will get her second dose of chemo soon. Her Hoodad contacted me thru Thurston’s site here and he will be starting to post a blog for her so keep an eye out for Winnie! They’re on Instagram too “Saintbernardsquared” – they have 2 Saints – Winnie and Willow and it’s the nicest family. Hoodad is going to help carry on for Thurston so watch for them to post.
      We we love you, Sally. Please keep in touch! ❤️❤️❤️

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