In November, we posted a tribute to Diego, a longtime and much-loved canine member of Ithaca Hikers. Sadly, a few weeks later Roger’s other dog, Ruby, also passed away. Like Diego, Ruby hiked with our group for many years. Ruby and Diego had different personalities, but both added much to our hikes. Ruby tended to stick closer to our group and could often be found walking directly behind Roger. She was a sweet dog and will be missed.
Below are some hikers’ reminiscences of Ruby. If you have some memories of Ruby you’d like to share, please email them to Jim or Nancy H.
On our recent Saturday hike around Stewart Park and the Farmers Market, I asked Roger how his remaining dog, Ruby, was handling the passing of his other dog, Diego. I was curious about whether Ruby displayed any observable signs of grief at Diego’s passing. We spoke a bit on the topic before we each moved on to conversations with other members in the group, as we so often do on our hikes.
The next day, I received word from Roger that Ruby had also passed away. I am sorry to hear of Roger’s second loss in such a short time, and I thank hiker Katharine for being there for Roger at this stressful time.
In my years with the group I’ve noticed that Roger’s two dogs each had their own personalities. Diego often went tearing off into the woods with exuberance to explore some exciting new thing, and was happy to start off the hike with a Milk Bone or two from my pocket. Ruby inevitably stayed with the group and closer to Roger. She would usually refuse a Milk Bone from me at the beginning of a hike, but somewhere around the middle of the hike she would approach me and accept a treat, staying close by after that if she wanted more.
In contrast to Diego’s boundless energy and devil-may-care attitude, Ruby often reminded me of a disapproving older aunt, sometimes fixing me with a stare that seemed to take me to task for something I was doing at that moment. Even with that, she was a good trail companion.
Roger had recently retired Ruby from hikes, content to let her sit in his car until the hike was over or, in some cases, leaving her home entirely on hike days.
Roger, thank you for sharing the company of your dogs with us over many years. I’m happy that I was able to share the time on the trails that I had with both Diego and Ruby.
From Mary W.:
Ruby’s quiet enjoyment of the trails was often my inspiration. She and her brother Diego have lifetime memberships, their past and future, on the trails and in the memories the Ithaca Hikers.
Rest peacefully, Ruby.
From Shannon G.:
I am a relatively new hiker to the group, but I had the sheer pleasure of doing a few hikes with both Diego and Ruby this year.
My oldest pup, who will be 16 in a couple of months, is too slow-moving and car-averse to join. So it was awesome to see those two zoom about, having a blast.
Our deepest condolences to Roger and his family.
From Sandra B.:
To Roger: Your dogs were always welcoming to my exuberant border collie, Skye. Sorry for loss of both of your four-legged friends in such a short period of time.
Thanks to Ithaca Hikers for allowing us to bring our dogs. It is a special privilege.
Ruby and Diego were friendly and enthusiastic hikers for a decade or more. Both are missed.