Pet owners, community mourn 30 dogs killed in kennel fire

Posted at 10:20 PM, Apr 12, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-12 22:20:59-04

MUSKEGON, Mich. -- A community said their final goodbyes on Thursday to dozens of dogs who died in a fire at a kennel in Nunica.

A service was held at the Clock Funeral Home in Muskegon to remember the 30 dogs who died in the fire at Storms Ahead Kennels.

"It's been heartbreaking to go home and have them not greet us in the driveway," said Dacia Albaugh, who lost two dogs in the fire. "And it's just been different because when we look outside they should be there and they're not."

Albaugh was just one of many who lost pets in the March 30 fire.  She and her family found out the news while they were visiting Tennessee.

"It was really hard to come home because we knew they wouldn't be there," she said.

Kennel owner Janet Rehfus was visibly upset as she addressed the crowd during the memorial service Thursday.

"There's not enough words I can say about how bad I feel," she said. "I hold each dog in my heart. I'm so thankful for all of you, so very thankful."

Some members of the community, like Audrey Stromberg, attended the service with their dogs as a show of support.

"When I heard about the tragedy... I was just heartbroken and heartbroken for the families," Stromberg said.