This is hard to believe and, at times, hard to swallow but mom had a life BEFORE me. Part of her B.J. life (Before Jack) was Willie, the family pup.
Mom grew up in a house that always had animals, cats, birds, the occasional rabbit but ALWAYS dogs.
Grandpa went to the pound one day "just looking" and came across a puffy white dog. As soon as their eyes met, they just knew they'd be forever friends. (Kinda like mom and I...but this story isn't about me- I digress)
lady: Sorry sir, there is a 7 day waiting period on him
grandpa: but why?
lady: because he was dropped in the night depository, we need to see if he has a home
Frustrated and upset, Grandpa went home and begged Grandma for permission for another animal. (Did I mention that since I'm a dog, this whole story might not be factual? The parts that I don't know, I'm just making up...but it makes for a better story this way...)
Every day for seven days, Grandpa went and checked on the puffy dog. On one trip to the pound, mom tagged along to meet the white puff-ball. FINALLY, we were allowed to bring him home.
The first night he was a mess. Grandpa and mom gave him a bath and then gave him a hair cut in the family room. A bond was formed.
Grandpa: we need to come up with a name
Aunt Cathy: why not just call him 'Dog'
Aunt Cathy: well, Uncle Willie and Aunt June are coming to visit this weekend, maybe they'll have a name for him!
And that Saturday night, the white puffy dog was named Willie. Why? Because As soon as Uncle Willie sat down the puffy dog wouldn't leave him alone.
Legend has it that Willie shared his time between Grandpa's lap and mom's. (this doesn't make me too jealous...sniffle)
Willie set the bar REALLY high for me to live up to. He was a true friend to my mom, the 'original' snuggle-buddy and someone everyone liked.
Just like me, Willie had a bunch of nick names: Whoop, Wooper, Buddy, Will...
Something I don't have in common with Willie is the bond he shared with Coco.
Willie and Coco were partners in crime. Coco was (is) a prissy dog; she doesn't like to get her feet wet, she whines so be held but she was always by Willie's side.
I only met Willie once, a few years ago, but I gotta tell 'ya, if there was ever a dog I envied, it was him. Mom just turned to jello when she saw him and picked him up to give him a big hug.