Girl trying to save sick pet dies in stolen car crash

Sometimes, the news I find is just sad.

A 15-year-old girl died Tuesday in a dramatic, ill-advised, effort to save her cancer-stricken dog from euthanasia.

Taylor Mae Stinchcomb, 15, died trying to prevent her dog from being euthanized.

Taylor Mae Stinchcomb, 15, died trying to prevent her dog from being euthanized.

According to an article in the Chicago Sun Times, Taylor Mae Stinchcomb, 15, stole her family’s 2003 Dodge minivan and fled her Chicago-area home with her ill dog, Romulus, and a female friend, also 15.

When Taylor became too upset to drive, her unnamed friend took the wheel. Moments later, the friend lost control of the vehicle and crashed into several trees and a telephone pole.

The dog was thrown from the vehicle and died immediately. Taylor died of her injuries at a local hospital. The driver escaped almost without a scratch.

Drugs or alcohol were not a factor in the crash, police said.

Police are not sure where the girls were headed or what they planned to do.

Taylor picked the dog out while visiting an animal shelter on her 13th birthday.

A high school freshman, Taylor is survived by two sisters, a brother and her parents, Bill and LeeAnn Stinchcomb.

95 comments Add your comment

Jean Sturgeon

June 24th, 2011
7:21 am

This is so sad, for her, her dog and her friend who is now in trouble herself. My thoughts and prayers are with her family as well as her friend’s family. She was a beautiful young lady.

DamnAnimalLovers

June 24th, 2011
7:23 am

Teach your children to love ppl more than they love some ill-fated crappy dog… Pun intended.

Thoth Amon

June 24th, 2011
7:31 am

I have two children and if one of them took the car (without permission, apparently) there is NO WAY I would consider it “stolen”. Shame on the media for being insensitive, heartless morons for saying she “stole” the family car. And if the parents said it, they’re as insensitive, heartless as the media.

How about “took the car without permission”? See? That only took my five seconds to come up with and I’m not a news writer!

Editor

June 24th, 2011
7:42 am

@Thoth: “Stole the car” uses fewer words, a prime concern when space is limited (assuming you’re coming from a newspaper writing point of view”. Your version has two extra word that are very long.

Speaking of editing: “Taylor had been picked the dog…”?

Editor

June 24th, 2011
7:43 am

And two typos in my response. 1. Take foot. 2. Insert in mouth.

lauren

June 24th, 2011
7:43 am

Thoth Amon… IT IS WHAT IT IS. “took the car w/o permission” its called theft. If she hadnt stolen the car, she’d still be alive. Poor baby,bless her heart. But if she took it without permission, by DEFINITION she stole the car. Just b/c the situation is tragic, that is no excuse to sugarcoat something so simple… is that all you got out of the article? Sensitivity isnt what the media is for… they just give you the facts. I’ll bet the police report says theft as well… cause thats what it was.

btw: pray for the friend that survived :(

Tragic

June 24th, 2011
7:49 am

Prayers are with the families.

KDont

June 24th, 2011
7:54 am

My 13 year old took our car without permission. I can assure you, she stole it. She hit a house but thankfully they all made it out ok. Of course she was grounded for 8 years and now that she is 21, I have finally allowed her to get her license.

Jaimac

June 24th, 2011
7:54 am

This situation is unfortuanate for all parties involved. There apparently were some misplaced priorities and not a lot of reality. I can understand that the teen was upset that her pet was going to be euthanized. However, her parents failed in teaching her that death is apart of life.

DamnAnimalLovers

June 24th, 2011
8:01 am

Wonder if she’s in “doggie” heaven or people heaven? Just food for thought for all of you naive, God-fearing idiots who really believe there’s such a place high above the cloud for the dearly departed… lmao

connie

June 24th, 2011
8:02 am

Prayers for the family and the driver of the van when it crashed.

brad

June 24th, 2011
8:06 am

DAL, could you be a bigger prick?

Bill

June 24th, 2011
8:13 am

In some states, taking a motor vehicle without permission is different from auto theft.

patti kendrick

June 24th, 2011
8:15 am

Her heart was in the right place. To some people, their dog is part of the family. My sympathy goes out to her family and friends.

retnek

June 24th, 2011
8:21 am

@ brad….No, I think DAL is about as big a one as they come. It makes you sick to think there are heartless idiots like that literate enough to post in an online forum, but apparently there are. He/she must be one sick, miserable person.

"Took"

June 24th, 2011
8:32 am

Why couldn’t they just say she “took” the family minivan…why say “stole?” Geez.

Babs

June 24th, 2011
8:40 am

DamnAnimalLovers – what a complete ass you are!

better than you will ever be

June 24th, 2011
8:46 am

@DamnAnimalLovers-I can see you were likely abused and molested and you likely are doing the same. No one has any regard for you and you serve no purpose here. You will never be worth anything here so you choose to display your obvious dysfunctional upbringing by your words. That poor dog is better than you are even though it has died. It’s obvious you were never loved so your statement of loving ppl more is quite the oxymoron as you would never say that if you even knew what love was. God still loves you and every other ignorant, negative idiot on here, but obviously he is the ONLY one who does. You are the joke in the meaning of life and love.

JT

June 24th, 2011
8:56 am

ditto DamnAnimalLovers………

ChrisW

June 24th, 2011
9:02 am

DamnAnimalLovers – you are a complete idiot. She had compassion for her dog. She loved him. It’s people like you that make the world a disgusting place. Everyone knows there is something seriously wrong with people that don’t like animals.

Compassion

June 24th, 2011
9:05 am

Some people are really missing the point here. How she obtained the vehicle really doesn’t matter, but what matters is that she and her dog died. I’m sure that she was quite aware that dying is something that we all have to do, but that doesn’t make the loss easier. Please remember that she was just a teenager and like most teenagers she didn’t think before doing this. My heart goes out to both families.

Amia in ATL

June 24th, 2011
9:13 am

Damn Animal Lovers and JT…..if you don’t find the topic interesting, move on to the next. If you have a pet, you can understand the love people have with their pets. Before I got a dog, I never understood and thought it was crazy and funny. I am here to tell you, I LOVE MY DOG!!! So imagine a little girl and her love for her pet. She lost her life!!!! Be sensitive. I can’t believe the Jacka$$es on the beautiful Friday morning!

Steve

June 24th, 2011
9:18 am

If the dog was dying of cancer, isn’t it the humane thing to do to put it under?? I can see her being upset about putting down a healthy dog, but this story is just odd.

ManOfTeal

June 24th, 2011
9:18 am

Wow, we have idiots arguing over semantics and idiots who bring religious ideologies into a story that has nothing to do with religion. You’re doing it wrong!

/Please never reproduce.

Sweetpunkin

June 24th, 2011
9:19 am

The girl should have known better esp because of her state of mind at the present time. However, I still feel bad for her parents although if I were her parents I would have planned to take care of the dog while she was away at school or at friends.

Samantha

June 24th, 2011
9:30 am

This is so sad. My prayers goes out to her parents, family and friends. May she rest in peace.

Roberto

June 24th, 2011
9:45 am

DAL and JT are the same per..,no, prick.

DamnAnimalLovers

June 24th, 2011
9:51 am

I think she’s in DOGGIE HEAVEN – where all Animal lovers go to spend the remainder of their soulless lives – taking care of the sick, dying and the already-dead.
Get over yourselves, people. Like the good preacher as always said, “God will not take you before your time!” Maybe it was her time. lol

Lefty

June 24th, 2011
10:07 am

D-A-L is just looking for attention and seeing if he/she can get a rise out of people, That’s all, nothing more. It’s probably just a kid out of school for the summer with nothing to do. Ignore the troll and it will go away.

SWMarietta

June 24th, 2011
10:13 am

This would have never happened if she was in 4H.

Mimi

June 24th, 2011
10:23 am

to ‘Editor’: you’re suggestion that space is more important than accuracy is exactly what’s wrong with you and the main stream media of today… there’s is NO need to sensationalize the fact that this distraught child took the car… simply stating that she ‘took the car’ takes no more of your stupid precious space than your statement that she ’stole the car’… as a matter of fact it takes one less letter… and when your desire to save space overcomes your obligation to accurately and impartially report the news then – you fail … open mouth, change foot

Irony

June 24th, 2011
10:24 am

The dog died while she was trying to save it from certain death?

.....

June 24th, 2011
10:34 am

Mimi, it is what it is. You take something without permission it is considered stealing.

Mimi

June 24th, 2011
10:50 am

The article makes reference to the police as if the writer has done sufficient research. It is the job of police to decide if criminal charges are appropriate to be filed against anyone, not the job of a sensationalizing media. ‘Stolen’ implies a crime which was not reported as pending charges in the article, and therefore is considered a passing of judgment from a media who lacks impartiality and prefers to add drama where it isn’t needed. Fail.

Mike

June 24th, 2011
10:51 am

This is tragic but should be a lesson for all children/teenagers. Do not steal from your parents! We have become so pet/animal crazy that it is tragic all together. We care more for pets than we do our fellow human. The dog had cancer, when was the last time you heard that, if you grew up in the late 70’s early 80’s…we would have said, “it just died”! We move on, cry a few tears and get another pet, simple. Corporations want you to humanize these pets so that they can take more of your money.

Mike

June 24th, 2011
10:51 am

Lynn

June 24th, 2011
11:05 am

@DamnAnimalLovers — Sounds like somebody had a big bowl of B*&$H for breakfast. Why don’t you go troll somewhere else?

suavez

June 24th, 2011
11:07 am

DAL
Thanks for the laugh. Let the Christians play make-believe without ruining it for them. I’m sure the girl and her dog are running and playing in a field of poppies in heaven. Very sad story, but the irony is rather funny.

Chang

June 24th, 2011
11:09 am

Blessed her soul. May God be with her.

brad

June 24th, 2011
11:26 am

Suavez and DAL, it’s not about religious belief, it’s about the ability to have even the slightest amount of compassion.

CH

June 24th, 2011
11:26 am

Poor misguided girl. I know my beloved pet was so sick at the end. Now that I am older I feel guilty for trying to keep her here and make her suffer. My parents tried for a couple of months to talk me into putting her down but I just couldn’t bare it. But as a teenager you don’t think like that. EVERYTHING is bigger than it really is, more important..don’t you guys remember? Who knows what her desperate plan was. But where ever or what ever happens after this life..those left here who loved her deserve a little compassion and love. Not stupid arguements about stole..took..
And I’m not even gonna bother with the other. Bless his/her heart.

CAM

June 24th, 2011
11:31 am

I see some cold post and proves on this planet there are more morons than not…I had a sick cat that never left the yard and on her last day she ran down the street and i had to go bring her back.my girl freind’s mom picked her up to carry her to the vet..little did i know… they were going to put her down..the cat knew it but i had no clue.

Hull

June 24th, 2011
11:37 am

DamnAnimalLovers

June 24th, 2011
9:51 am
I think she’s in DOGGIE HEAVEN – where all Animal lovers go to spend the remainder of their soulless lives – taking care of the sick, dying and the already-dead.

This is the kind of comment someone like Jared Loughner might post. Hopefully your words are in jest, if they’re not you really need to seek counseling.

SAJWG

June 24th, 2011
11:38 am

Mike: If people were as good as our companion animals then I’d do as much for them. Unfortunately, they’re not.
“The dog is a gentleman; I hope to go to his heaven, not man’s.” ~Mark Twain, letter to W.D. Howells, 2 April 1899

TC

June 24th, 2011
11:54 am

The dog was dying anyway. Now you are dead and you made the dog die faster. Teach your children that animals are animals and should be treated as such.

Charlie S

June 24th, 2011
11:57 am

I mean I don’t even see myself a really a Christian despite growing up in the church. However, if being an atheist or even an agnostic makes you loose your humanity then sign me up for Hinduism, Zen or even whatever makes Apple consumers so loyal. I’d rather have fellowship with good people then cynicism and self-loathing alone. All hail the spaghetti monster!

TGIF

June 24th, 2011
12:10 pm

Her parents probably refused to pay for treatment. I’ve seen irresponsible pet owners opt to euthanize over a broken leg. SPAY, NEUTER AND ADOPT!

TGIF

June 24th, 2011
12:13 pm

“Animals are animals” …. Until you or someone in your family is saved by a pet or needs a canine assistant. (…or needs to catch Bin Laden — had to throw that one in there)

TGIF

June 24th, 2011
12:15 pm

Our domesticated animal world are more humane than we are: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ofpYRITtLSg

Editor

June 24th, 2011
12:26 pm

@Mimi: “took the car” would be fine; however, the previous poster suggested “took the car without permission”, which is much longer. And yes, space is very precious.

Also – your vs. you’re.