A young electrician from Tampa, Florida, is being hailed a hero for rescuing a famous and beloved dog who was taken from a beach on Nov. 4.
The Jack Russell terrier, named Zeus, is an indispensable member of a kiteboard-loving family.
His owner is 16-year-old Cameron Maramenides, a Team USA kiteboarding member who is slated to compete in the 2020 Olympics.
Cameron’s father is Dimitri Maramenides, a world-renowned kiteboarder who spends many weekends in the ocean kiteboarding alongside his son.
Zeus is famous in his own right, because, incredibly, the dog knows how to kiteboard, too. Zeus has appeared in magazines and videos, showing off his extreme doggy-athleticism.
When the Maramenides family couldn’t find Zeus after an afternoon competition, they were devastated.
They did everything in their power to find Zeus, including hiring Pet Detective Jamie Katz and offering a $3,500 cash reward for the safe return of their pup, no questions asked.
On Nov. 8, four days after Zeus went missing, a young man named Miguel Camacho happened to read about the dog’s story on Facebook.
Camacho was in a West Tampa park and had just finished studying for a test that he was to take that same day. Suddenly, a vehicle pulled up that caught Camacho’s eye.
“I was sitting there, reading the article,” Camacho told the Tampa Bay Times.
“The guy pulls up, gets out the car, grabs the dog and I’m thinking, man this looks just like that dog.”
Urgently, Camacho contacted the phone number given in the Facebook post. He was soon speaking with 16-year-old Cameron, and could hear the pain and worry in the teen’s voice.
Camacho really needed to leave to be on time for his test, but he decided that helping Zeus reunite with his family was more important.
Camacho followed the man in his vehicle until the man stopped and asked Camacho why he was following him.
The confrontation could have gone terribly wrong, but Camacho kept his cool and simply stated his purpose:
“I believe that dog isn’t yours,” Camacho told the man. “I’m on the phone with his owner right now.”
At Cameron’s prompting over the phone, Camacho called the pup’s name, “Zeus!”
Zeus came bounding out of the stranger’s truck and hopped right into Camacho’s car.
It wasn’t long before Zeus was reunited with his rightful owners in an emotional ending to a long week.
“We are feeling completely exhausted, yet elated and we are still pinching ourselves to see if we are dreaming,” said Dimitri’s wife, Helen Trotman.
“We are so fortunate Miguel was there and was willing to put himself into a possible dangerous situation to get our dog back.”
Police have been apprised of the situation, but so far have not located Zeus’ abductor.
Camacho had been unaware of the cash reward, but accepted it, with plans to use the money to benefit his children.
“I have two kids,” he said. “I’m gonna do some Christmas shopping for them and put the rest in their savings accounts.”
As for the missed test, Camacho was happy to report that his teacher allowed him to make it up after hearing about Camacho’s brave act of selflessness.
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