Lifestyle & Human Interest

State Trooper Finds Two Baby Cubs After Mama Bear Killed in Traffic Crash


Have you ever noticed that some of the bravest people are the most humble in their responses after being praised for their good work? They will often claim that they were just doing what anybody else would have done or that it was just part of the job.

Not many of us can say that rescuing bear cubs simply comes with the job.

That’s exactly what Sr. Trooper D.H. Cepelnik of the Virginia State Police was able to claim, however.

The Virginia State Police Twitter account tweeted on April 13 about just how Cepelnik was able to protect and serve.

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“Sr Tpr DH Cepelnik was #JustDoingHisJob when he rescued these cubs after their mother was killed in a traffic crash in Franklin Co #Virginia Thursday night. These little guys are now safe & sound at Wildlife Center of VA in Waynesboro,” the tweet read.

The Wildlife Center of Virginia has two Black Bear cub patients listed on their website with an admission date of April 13. The cubs were the first two of the year to be admitted.

They were first spotted on April 6 by a Nelson County citizen. Mama bear was nowhere to be seen. They appeared again a few days later still without their mother.

The next step to complete before rescuing the cubs was the installation of a trail camera. A concerned citizen reviewed the camera footage for any signs of the mother bear.

The Virginia Department of Game & Inland Fisheries received a call from the citizen who dedicated time and patience to ensuring the cubs were indeed without their mama or any adults.

On April 12, biologists and a wildlife rehabilitator picked up the cubs.

After they were admitted to the Wildlife Center of Virginia, a veterinarian determined that the cubs were two females who were thin but healthy. They each weighed a little over four pounds.

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The biologist set up a fostering attempt with a wild sow and the cubs. The organization explained on its Facebook page that the attempt did not work out, but the cubs will be released when they are yearlings next spring

I’m thankful for people like Sr. Trooper D.H. Cepelnik and the concerned citizen for “just doing their jobs” or the “right thing” for even the vulnerable animals in their communities!

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Carolyn Fultz is a former contributor for Liftable Media. She holds a B.A. in Communication from Hope College.
Carolyn Fultz is a former contributor for Liftable Media. She holds a B.A. in Communication from Hope College. Carolyn's writing has been featured in both online and print media, including Just Between Us magazine. She resides in Phoenix with her husband and children.
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