GEORGETOWN, Texas (KXAN) — Georgetown City Council members unanimously approved funding Tuesday night to build a memorial in honor of the 75 dogs killed in the Ponderosa Pet Resort fire on Sept. 18.
The city plans to build the memorial at the Bark Park, with several council members voicing their support for the memorial to have a dual function: to honor the pets lost as well as be an enhancement for the park that will be used by people and pets.
Several residents spoke at the city council session in support of the memorial but also to call on council members to pass code changes and enforce kennel permits. Georgetown resident Robin Eissler said her parents lost two puppies in the fire the day after they got married.
“No one even knew there was a fire within that building until the flames were so high that they could seen from I-35,” Eissler said. “If you stop for even a few seconds and think about the fear and the pain that those animals went through, it would break your heart.”
Georgetown resident Carmela Stearns also spoke at to the council. Stearns started an online petition to mandate preventive safety measures in pet facilities, which include fire safety alarms, sprinkler systems and bi-annual fire and code inspections. During the council session, Stearns read the names of the 75 pets killed.
“Please be these babies’ voices,” Stearns said. “It’s time for change. We can make change. We can make something out of this.”
The city has not yet specified the amount of funding allocated to the memorial. Georgetown City Manager David Morgan said it will take at least six months to draft the specific plans for the memorial, as they will be coming up with a donation process and working with families who lost their pets.