Dog missing after deadly I-95 crash found by retired police officer, wife

Henrico County

HENRICO, Va. (WRIC) — A retired Henrico police officer and his wife found a German Shepherd who went missing after a quadruple fatal crash on Interstate 95 south Wednesday morning.

Eric and Mary VonCanon said they took a detour around the site of the crash near Chamberlayne Avenue, after learning southbound traffic was shut down after the 2 a.m. collision.

Nearly 500 yards away from the wreckage, VonCanon spotted the dog laying attentively on the grassy shoulder with a collar and leash.

gemma
A German Shepard went missing after being involved in a crash on I-95 in Henrico Wednesday. The dog was rescued by a couple and taken to the vet. (Photo: Eric VonCanon)

“My wife Mary turned around to look at the accident,” Eric VonCanon said. “You usually see tire debris or dead carcasses and things like that. Just the shock factor, you’re not expecting to see a black and tan German Shepherd just laying on the side of the road.”

Virginia State Police said a Chevy Impala traveling north on the interstate crossed over into southbound lanes, hitting a guard rail and then a Tesla. The Tesla then collided with an unoccupied work van.

At some point, the German Shepherd, named Gemma went missing; prompting state police to tweet about her disappearance.

VonCanon, who handled canines while on the force and owns two German Shepherds, said he was relieved the dog was accounted for after taking Gemma to Brook Run Animal Clinic.

The brother of the woman who was riding in the Tesla told 8News that she and the other passenger are recovering from their injuries.

State police said five people were ejected from the Impala, four died and one person was critically injured. Police are working to identify the victims.

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