Animal rescue community mourns woman killed on Dixie Highway

Animal rescue community mourns woman killed on Dixie Highway

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - A woman killed after being hit by a car on Dixie Highway is being remembered as a leader in the Louisville animal rescue community.

Those who knew Ginny Chappell, 60, said she was headed home from helping a dog when she died, hit by a pickup truck on Dixie Highway near Ashby Lane on Thursday night.

“The circumstances of her death were horrible, but the way that it happened was so Ginny,” Tara Bassett, a friend, said.

Bassett said Chappell was walking home after doing something she loved.

“She was always willing to do whatever was necessary to help another person or especially an animal,” Bassett said.

Bassett said Chappell was helping groom a dog with severely matted fur.

After learning about her death, an online community of animal rescuers wrote a chorus of comments on social media, mourning the woman they saw as a leader.​

“She was very strong-willed, opinionated and stood up for her rights and for the rights of pets in our community,” ​Rita O’Hearn Smith, a friend, said.

Smith said she helped rescue dogs with Chappell in person, even remembering a night when she called her late to help an animal in need.

“You have to do what your heart tells you to do,” Smith said. “That’s what Ginny did.”​

It’s a heart that will be missed by her family, including, listed in Chappell’s obituary, her dog and cat Buddy and Benny. ​

“She was a big voice and a big presence,” Bassett said. “She will be very sorely missed in our animal rescue community.”

Police said the driver who struck Chappell will not be charged.

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