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Dog of man killed by friend reunited with family

Posted at 6:45 PM, Dec 29, 2015

“We just wanted a part of Matty back.”

They say dogs are a man’s best friend. 

Donny, a short, stout black and brown Terrier-Dachshund mix was Matt McLean’s.

“He’s an extremely sweet dog,” said Luke Kelly, McLean’s friend. “Everyone said Matt was one of the sweetest guys they know so that’s why Matt and Donny became such good friends." 

McLean was found brutally murdered on Monday, December 21st. He was stabbed to death by an acquaintance. During his murder, somehow, his dog got away.

“He went everywhere with Matt,” his sister, Brianna Gilbert said. “So it was one of those things, if we can’t get Matthew back, at least we can have Donny.

Family and friends made it their quest to find the dog. On Christmas Eve, search groups drove around town looking for him. They posted flyers both outside and on social media.

“My friend posted a picture of Donny and said ‘has anyone seen this dog?’ and all these people are commenting, ‘I found a dog similar.’”

After several false leads, there was finally a match. But Gilbert learned the woman who found Donny turned him in to an animal shelter and he was immediately adopted out.

“It was for a Christmas present for my son,” Crystal Hampton said of adopting Donny. “An early Christmas present and he instantly fell in love with him.”

Hampton and her seven-year-old son decided to give the dog back to the McLeans after she heard what happened.

The McLeans then paid for the Hamptons to get a new dog.

The Hamptons adopted a new dog on Tuesday and named him Jackson.

“In a way, it’s good, Hampton said. “We got two dogs from the shelter. One, actually to find its way back home and one to find a loving home.”

“Everyone was just hugging on Donny and loving on Donny,” Gilbert said. “He didn’t know what to do.”