For 12 years, Glen Rehoreg cared for Daisy, a duck living behind a Griswold Road car wash. But now, the homeless Elyria man says the mallard and her 4-week-old ducklings have been kidnapped, and he and patrons of the nearby Joyful Mug Lounge want them back.
For years, Daisy the duck had lived behind a stretch of businesses near Griswold Road in Elyria — inhabiting the wooded area as her own.
Daisy sightings were commonplace, and she became a fixture of the neighborhood, as the patrons of the Joyful Mug Lounge can tell you, since Daisy was known to saunter her way inside.
But she and her brood of
4-week-old babies are missing. Glen Rehoreg, Daisy’s self-appointed guardian, said Daisy and the kids were duck-napped, stolen by thieves and taken to a place unknown.
“I remember it like it was yesterday,” Rehoreg said Thursday, barely containing his emotions. “I was sitting in this very spot when someone ran into the bar screaming that someone’s taking the ducks. I ran outside as quickly as I could, but all I saw was someone snatch up Daisy, throw her in the back of a blue (Chevy) Blazer and speed away. I was chasing that truck down the street.”
She has been gone for five days now. Rehoreg said he prays daily for the ducks’ safe return.
Rehoreg’s reaction may strike some as extreme, but that’s because you probably don’t know the history.
For 12 years, the 57-year-old Rehoreg, a homeless man living behind the Ryko Car Wash on Griswold Road, has cared for the hen mallard and her ducklings with the devotion of a serious pet owner. Even with his limited resources, Rehoreg said he made sure Daisy had plenty of food to eat and a cozy place to sleep.
After all, what could be better than curling up on the chest of a man who has saved your life three times? In the time that Daisy has lived around Griswold Road and Leona Street, she has been attacked three times.
Once she was beaten with a bat and suffered a broken leg. No problem — Rehoreg just took some tape and two boards and put on splint on the duck. When she was hit over the head, Rehoreg once again nursed her back to health. The same can be said for when someone broke one of her wings.
His nurturing instincts are likely the result of his past.
In January 1983, Rehoreg broke several bones when he accidentally touched an electric wire and fell off a utility pole while trying to rescue a cat. Back then, he was a Sheffield Township volunteer firefighter and fell 20 feet to the ground to get that feline to safety.
He has since given up on daredevil-style cat rescues and instead spends his time caring for Daisy. Well, that was until Sunday night.
Rehoreg is not the only one missing the feathered friend.
At the mere mention of the name Daisy, others in the bar quickly chime in that they want the ducks back — no questions asked.
“The ducks are wild animals, but for the people around here, they were our pets,” said Chuck Salter, a bar patron. “She’s been here for so long that’s she’s always welcome. That’s of course if someone brings her back.”
Daisy’s place in the bar was probably summed up best by fellow customer Jack Canaday.
“With all the bad stuff going on in the world, Daisy brought a little bit of joy to everyone here. She was like our little superstar,” he said. “She knows it, too, because let her be hungry (and) she will walk right in, right up to Glen and quack until someone tosses some popcorn out for her.”
Contact Lisa Roberson at 329-7121 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Steve Manheim / Chronicle
Glen Rehoreg stands near the spot behind a Griswold Road car wash where Daisy (below right) and her six babies were stolen.