Come on Home, Little Bob

You asked me about the dog statue in the cemetery.

The statue is on the Guinn family plot. The Guinns are gone now, but they were well-known. Robert Guinn was an attorney who handled mostly small claims, but did well enough to own a house on President Street. He had a lovely wife, Rose, and a little girl, Doris.

All little girls should be pretty, but Doris wasn’t; her face fused improperly in the womb. There’s a name for the condition that I can’t remember, but it’s a cruel assessment of the divine to say that was God’s will, if you ask me. She was never photographed, but there was a portrait painted, and the artist aligned her features.

I saw it long ago; she had dark hair and a shy smile.

Doris in all other respects was a normal little girl; she had dolls and dresses and went to school with all the other little girls on the street. She also had a small dog, a spaniel of some kind that she adored. Her father had given her the puppy when she was five years old, so she named it after him. She called it Little Bob. The dog would follow her to school, wait afternoons on the corner for her to come home, and was with her when she died at twelve.

After that, Little Bob would go to the corner every afternoon and wait; at dark he’d go home until one day he couldn’t, and Bob Guinn went and got him. Oh, there was a fuss about putting a memorial to a dog, much less physical remains, but Robert Guinn took it to court and won, his finest hour before the bench.

So that’s Little Bob there with Doris. He was a good dog.

One Reply to “Come on Home, Little Bob”

  1. Makes me teary-eyed. Dogs are so loving and loyal. All of mine rest underground in the backyard, their own playground.
    I believe that Doris had Cruzon’s syndrome where the fonranel fuses prematurely. My best friend in grad school at NYU had it and was one of the first adults to undergo surgery in the 1970’s to ameliorate the facial irregularities.

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