Fiona “The Ambassador of E’ville” Crosses the Rainbow Bridge

1 min read

The E’ville Eye’s canine mascot “Fiona” crossed the rainbow bridge on August 1. The female brindle French Bulldog was 13 1/2 years old.

Her passing has left a hole in the hearts of those that loved her but she will be fondly remembered.

Who Rescued Who?

Fiona was rescued from a South Los Angeles shelter in 2009 after being forfeited by her owner. She was being used for backyard breeding and suffered from mange and other symptoms of neglect.

After being nursed back to health, she regained the personality that is a trademark of her breed. She quickly endeared herself to neighbors and fellow canines alike. She was eager to greet anyone she met with her signature butt-wiggle.

Her presence opened up a new world for me personally prompting me to converse with neighbors that I had previously only exchanged civilities with. Strangers would frequently stop us and start conversations with us.

A Catalyst for Building Community

It was in 2010 while I was walking Fiona outside our Southern Emeryville residence that I was robbed at gunpoint for my wallet and phone. The incident inspired me to found the local news website you are reading today.

Fiona was indirectly responsible and played a pivotal roll in building our social media audience. I realized that dogs made people more approachable and they served as an incredible icebreaker. The 4-5 dog walks per day provided ample opportunity to engage my neighbors in conversation and their thoughts and ideas on community issues.

Fiona, the "Ambassador of E'ville"

She was dubbed “The Ambassador of E’ville” by a City employee for her frequent presence at city events including the annual National Night Out public safety events, Love Our Neighborhood Day, The Bay Street Block Party, The Joseph Emery Skatepark Grand Opening and a litany of others.

She met with local dignitaries and came oh so close to having a neighborhood dog park built in her honor.

She appeared in a Bay Street holiday commercial, the printed pages of East Bay Express and helped promote events like the annual Berkeley Humane Pints for Paws.

She loved a warm patch of sun, a cold frosty paw, mercilessly destroying her toys and being stubborn as all hell.

She passed away peacefully surrounded by love ones at her home.

December 5, 2021 Update: Fiona was immortalized in a public art mural by Berkeley artist Nigel Sussman.

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Rob Arias

is a third generation Californian and East Bay native who lived in Emeryville from 2003 to 2021. Rob founded The E'ville Eye in 2011 after being robbed at gunpoint and lamenting the lack of local news coverage. Rob's "day job" is as a creative professional.


  1. I’m so sorry to hear this. We loved meeting Fiona at Pints for Paws and around emeryville. RIP Fiona

  2. Thank you, Fiona, for sharing your love and light, bringing much needed joy to our little corner of the world. ♥♥♥

  3. Sorry for your lost of your pet/companion/friend. Great to hear the story about how you rescued her, or rather, how she rescued you. Take care, Janice

  4. Fiona, Rob and Family, one of my favorite memories of my time with the E’ville Eye was getting to hang with you at a community event. You were a lovely dog who brought together a community. Thank you for being you and to your family for bringing you to our little town. Rest In Peace, Fiona, and sending my condolences to all who love you ❤️

  5. Having spent lots of time with Fiona throughout her life, I can truly say she was loved and had a good life after being rescued by Rob and Ji-Young.

  6. Your story is testimony that the joy Fiona brought you and your family is so much greater than the grief you are going through now. I only met her twice, yet just thinking of Fiona brings a smile to my face. I know she is having a good time in that great dog park in the sky. Long live Fiona!!!

  7. Rob, I know the pain you’re going through. My beautiful babies crossed over The Rainbow Bridge a few year ago. I still miss them so. RIP Fiona! You have friends waiting to great you.

  8. My condolences I know how dear our fur babies are and I cannot Imagine the loss you must be experiencing now.
    Sending you healing energy!

  9. It’s never easy but hopefully you can take solace knowing she had an incredible run and May she continue to prosper on the other side. Rest In Peace sweet lady!

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