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Search for lost dog helps find missing Wyoming man, family credits faith

Stella the rescue dog went missing on Thursday morning. A good samaritan, helping in the search, found Ray Tarasiewicz instead. Minutes later, Stella was also found.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Giselle Hodges recalls last Thursday morning when her dog, Stella, ran away while at their dads house in Kent County.

"My dad went to let her out, he opened the door and she just ran out and he chased her all around the neighborhood but she turned around one second and she was gone," said Giselle.

That day they gave a plea for help to find Stella the Rescue Dog.

"There were so many strangers at different times that would text me and say 'I'm going to go out right now, I'm going to take my dog for a walk because maybe she'll like my dog," said Olivia. "I'm going to go out in a couple of hours, if you need me to go out later I will.'"

On Friday afternoon, someone looking for Stella, who the family didn't know, instead found missing Wyoming man Ray Tarasiewicz almost two months to the day he went missing.

That area is near a swamp by Ivanrest Avenue and M-6.

Stella was found only minutes after Ray.

"It was devastating until we realized how miraculous the entire situation just knitted together," said Oliva.

On the morning of Nov. 21 Ray Tarasiewicz was last seen shoveling the driveway of his Wyoming home. 

The 69-year-old man suffered from early dementia, along with diabetes.

The Kent County Medical examiner says Ray died from hypothermia and dementia.

In finding Ray, and helping the Tarasiewicz family find closure, Olivia Hodges credits faith for the discovery.

"Really good things can still come out of tragic things because their loss is devastating," said Olivia. "But now we've been able to not only bring home our baby, but help them to be reunited with I can't imagine. Two days was hard. I can't imagine 60."

Amanda McCarty, Ray's daughter, posted on Facebook that there will be a celebration of life for Ray this Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to noon at the Spectrum Entertainment Complex off of Clyde Park in Wyoming.


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