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.
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.
— The E’ville Eye News (@TheEvilleEye) December 4, 2016
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.
— The E’ville Eye News 👁 (@TheEvilleEye) December 6, 2021