Saturday, August 19, 2017, was the unveiling of a new Rainbow Bridge Memorial at South Buena Vista Park, 1613 Dawson Drive, Vista 92081. Mayor Judy Ritter, Councilwoman Amanda Rigby, Councilman John Aguilera and Deputy Mayor John Franklin were there to recognize and support the dedication and to see the new bridge and sign. Over forty dog lovers came to support the day. At least 15 dogs enjoyed playing and running around their usual park path and grounds.
This project is the brain child of Brian Cyr. He frequented the South Buena Vista Dog Park with his dog “Cowboy” on a regular basis. “Cowboy” passed away and Brian set out on July 3, 2016 to replace the existing bridge in the Park with a bridge designed to place a memorial plaque dedicated to his trusted companion and others that have gone to the other side. This is the first and only memorial in the United States dedicated to civilian dogs.
Brian spoke to Amanda Rigby, Vista City Councilwoman, and she took the request to the Vista City Council. They voted unanimously for the bridge replacement. Her dog “Angie” now has a plaque on Rainbow Bridge along with “Cowboy” and two others.
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Brian met Brady Creasy, a 16 year old Life Scout and Eagle Scout Candidate, who took on this project as a step to becoming an Eagle Scout. The old bridge needed to be demolished and re-built. There were many details to be worked out plus collaborating with the city on the approval of the plans. The one day project ended up taking two days. Brady did a great job with help from several adults and fellow Scouts. A volunteer engineer of the City helped with the project after fourteen months of preparation.
Brian also needed a Sponsor/Administrator to help him with the forms and acquiring new plaques to place on the bridge, which will be able to hold about 300 plaques. If you frequent the park, come by and pick up a form to order your own plague if you have had a loss of a furry friend. Take the form to the Melrose Veterinary Hospital to order and Brian will have it installed. Another memorial bridge is being planned in Guajome Park Vista with other locations being sought out.