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Kentucky Police Officer Rescues Freezing Deer From Backyard Pool — In January!

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There were an estimated 858,876 deer in Kentucky at the opening of the 2017/2018 hunting season, a number that grew slightly in the next year or so. The Lexington Police Department in Lexington, Kentucky has 630 sworn officers and 150 civilian personnel. It’s probably inevitable that one of Kentucky’s deer would meet up with one of those Lexington police officers some time. But who would have thought that it would happen in a backyard pool in rural Fayette County?

Not Just Another Day On The Beat

On January 20, 2020, the Lexington Police Department’s dispatcher placed a call to Officer Flannery. The dispatcher’s call included the following: “There is a deer stuck in a swimming pool… an inground swimming pool. It’s in distress and we’re calling animal control.” It’s unknown how often Lexington’s officers are required to rescue deer from swimming pools, but Officer Flannery certainly took it in stride.

Flannery arrived at the rural Fayette County property before anyone from animal control and — sure enough — there was a deer placidly floating alone in the water. On January 20, 2020, temperatures ranged from a low of 16 degrees to a not-so-high of 27 degrees – Fahrenheit! There’s no way to know how long that deer was in the water, but it sure looked like it was cold. There may even have been ice crystals on the deer’s muzzle.

When Flannery arrived, he calmly reached over the edge of the pool, where the deer seemed to be waiting for some help. The deer didn’t flinch at all as Flannery tried to pull it over the edge. There was no way that one person could pull that deer out of the pool. Thankfully, someone else was nearby and able to help. While Flannery grabbed hold of that deer’s front legs, the second person grabbed the deer’s back legs with gloved hands — where were Flannery’s gloves? Together, the two lifted the deer out of the cold water.

While in the water, the deer seemed stunned and shocked. It sure sprang to life once it was out on dry land, though. Without a word of thanks or a backward glance, the deer leaped to its feet and dashed away from its rescuers.

The Moment Was Captured For Posterity

Police body cameras in Kentucky have been in the news a lot. In June 2020, Louisville Kentucky’s police chief was fired after officers involved in a fatal shooting had not activated their body cameras. The incident occurred while officers were enforcing a curfew imposed in response to protests over an earlier police shooting in Louisville. Nothing like that was an issue in Fayette County on January 20, 2020, though. Officer Flannery had his body camera on and running. Luckily for the world, the Lexington Police Department released the video of the whole event.  Watch it right through to the end to appreciate the Las Vegas-touch added to the story. Yes, that’s Celine Dion and “My Heart Will Go On” from the soundtrack to Titanic. 

As if there aren’t already enough reasons to be thankful for first responders like Lexington Police Department’s Officer Flannery!

How Often Does This Happen?

This isn’t the first time a deer has been caught in a swimming pool. On Father’s Day in June 2010, a tiny baby deer was trapped in a much sunnier and warmer pool where she was rescued by a man while children watched and a woman narrated the scene. And, anxious as that little deer was, it almost looked like it was enjoying itself while doing laps. It even jumped out of the rescuer’s arms for another dip! Happy Father’s Day, indeed! Watch the video here, and brace yourself for the sound that tiny, anxious deer makes on the way out of the pool.

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