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Nail-Biting Rescue: Wild Foal Saved from Certain Death By Sundre Hero

With the clock ticking, Dustin Lyle sprang into action, rescuing a foal from a steep embankment in a scene straight out of a movie

Debbie De Dutch and her grandson regularly visit Sundre to see the wild horses.

But never has it been as nail-biting an experience as last Monday.

As the pair spotted the herd by the side of the road near the Panther River west of Sundre and pulled up to catch a closer look, they saw something that made Debbie’s heart stop.

A foal, precariously perched on a steep embankment, with its distressed mother looking on helplessly.

This scene is all too familiar for Darrell Glover of the Help Alberta Wildies Society. These Panther River area cliffs have claimed the lives of many horses.

“These are the same cliffs that we’ve lost many horses to in the past. It’s a very steep drop,” Darrell Glover says in a video voiceover of the scene, which was all caught on tape by Debbie.

But someone changed the narrative of the story this time around.

Heroic Action

Dustin Lyle was driving alongside his girlfriend, his father, and his father’s wife on their way to a favourite fishing spot when they happened on the scene.

Dustin Lyle rescuing the foal
Dustin Lyle rescuing the foal | Help Alberta Wildies Society

As he told CBC, he was immediately pulled to spring into action once he spotted the foal.

“My instincts…I just jumped out really and just hoofed her right up there because I saw nobody else was going.”

Lyle sprang into action in a heart-stopping moment, bravely scaling the hillside to reach the stranded foal.

Determined, he waved off the concerned mare and, with steady hands, grasped the foal by its legs. Inch by inch, he dragged the helpless creature away from the edge to safety.

With the foal safely on solid ground, Lyle gently nudged it back onto its feet before leaving it in the watchful gaze of its mother.

Relieved, the mare made her way to her foal, guiding it down the embankment to join the other wild horse band grazing below.

Mother and Foal reunited
Mother and foal reunited | Help Alberta Wildies Society

“(The foal’s) future was certain to be death if not for Dustin, this brave fella that climbed up over the hill here and rescued this foal. This is just heart-stopping,” said Glover.

Reflecting on the gravity of the situation, he emphasized that the outcome could have been disastrous without passersby’s timely intervention.

He praised Lyle’s selfless act, though Lyle remained humble, insisting he had done what was necessary.

“He’s the typical hero when he says he’s no hero,” Glover told the Albertan.

Lyle may downplay his actions, but his courage and quick thinking saved the foal’s life, helping keep Sundre’s iconic wild herds thriving—no doubt it meant much more to that momma!

As the video captured by Debbie De Dutch and shared by the Help Alberta Wildies Society illustrates, sometimes heroes emerge from the most unexpected places in the most unexpected moments.

Footage of the rescue has been shared over 2,000 times on the Save Alberta Wildies Society Facebook page.

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