Homeward Bound

Whether you heard about it on Good Morning America or read about it in the New York Times, Seattle Times or the Chicago Tribune, the hearts of millions were touched as a tale of a missing Border Collie named Katie, was recently reunited with her owners after 57 days lost in Kalispell, Montana.

Carole King, Katie, and Verne King!

With millions of impressions and shares across the internet, national headlines swept up the story after an article published in Kalispell’s Daily Inter Lake newspaper featured Katie, her owners, and their joyful reunion. While stories like Katie’s seem to gain virality across the Internet on a semi-regular basis, her owners’ persevering journey back to her struck the nerves of all who hope to have the faith and tenacity demonstrated by Katie’s owners.

Video Courtesy of CNN/HLN

To understand just how moving the story is to us and every pet owner across America: On July 20th, Carole and Verne King returned to their hotel room at the My Place Hotel Kalispell location, only to find their Border Collie Katie was missing. As the Kings began to search for Katie, they were informed that she had been seen running out of the hotel during a thunderstorm several hours prior by a front desk worker. Katie had seemingly found her way out of the Kings’ hotel room by opening the door. Upon this realization, the Kings began to frantically search for Katie and with the help of the front desk worker, they were able to get Missing Dog fliers created and distributed across local Missing Pet Facebook pages and throughout the community.

“Because of the front desk worker at the hotel that helped us that night, we got Katie’s flyer posted on the Lost and Found Pets of Flathead County Facebook page,” said King. “From there, it was shared like a domino effect on over 100 lost pet sites. The staff from My Place Kalispell were great during Katie’s journey and called in sightings on numerous occasions!”

Photo courtesy of Carole King

Hundreds of miles from their home near Spokane, Washington, the Kings’ search would last for nearly two months. Carole would eventually quit her job in search of her beloved Katie, and countless members of the Kalispell community would join the search for Katie, sharing fliers around town and sending in sighting reports of her. With the hearts of Kalispell rallying behind the Kings in their search for Katie, they finally found her in a subdivision near the hotel after 57 days.

“The community of Kalispell and Flathead County were unbelievable,” said King. “I had strangers hanging flyers, calling in possible sightings, and changing their routes home from work to look for Katie. Now that Katie is home, she is doing well, regaining the weight she lost and has returned to her old self!”

From a personal perspective, Katie’s story is a deeply-inspiring tale that tells us to hold steady in hard times. How Katie survived 57 days without her owners, we may never know. But what we do know is that she was found through the efforts of a community and one that we are very proud to be a part of, which brings us to this perspective as a hotel brand: To truly be a part of communities as kindred as Kalispell’s, we must first be good neighbors, and we are really proud of our team in Kalispell for doing just that. Welcome home Katie.