Lincoln Facebook group rallies to reunite missing dog with Illinois family

Published: Sep. 20, 2021 at 7:57 AM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - An Illinois family is reunited with their beloved dog, who went missing before being found hundreds of miles away right here in Nebraska.

Pets go missing nearly everyday, but with a little help from a Facebook community, sometimes even the most unlikely reunion can be made possible.

The story of this happy reunion dates back to September 4th with a Facebook post. Melissa Christopherson and her family were looking for help finding their dog Sasha.

“My parents are 80 years old and Sasha is like their child,” Christopherson said, “They had balled the whole time she was gone, they didn’t think they’d ever see her again.”

Sasha had escaped from the family’s RV while stopped at Pine Grove RV Park off of I-80 during a road trip.

“I turned around and said come here Sasha and she looked at me, backed out of her harness and took off,” Christopherson said.

In a matter of hours her missing posts were spreading on Facebook thanks to shares by other people wanting to help, but it wasn’t your normal Facebook post. Sasha was posted on Lincoln Nebraska and Surrounding Areas Lost and Found Pets which was started just five years ago by Nikki Stineman. The group now has more than 14,000 members and collectively they put force behind the mission to find Sasha.

Stineman said a member was actually at the campground when Sasha went missing, and was the first to post about Sasha in the group.

“It was 11 days and you put your heart and soul every day going and searching for hours and hours,” said Stineman.

After those 11 days almost all hope was lost, before a miracle happened.

“I was driving back towards the campground on the dirt road and I actually saw her. It was a fluke that I was driving down that exact same spot, but we set the trap and within 45 minutes we got her,” said Stineman.

With just a little hope and a lot of love from a Facebook community a reunion that once felt impossible, became possible.

“We now have Sasha, what a group. I cannot thank them enough, can’t say enough good things about them,” Christopherson said.

“They go out and look for lost pets, everyday there’s a post. Somebody, a member or a member from an organization, somebody’s always going out there it seems like. It’s just wonderful, couldn’t do it without them,” Stineman said.

This isn’t the first and certainly isn’t the last story of success. The Lincoln Nebraska and Surrounding Areas Lost and Found Pets has returned hundreds of pets to their owners. They say new members join everyday, all with the goal to get pets home.

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