Susan Butcher, Iditarod Champ, Dead of Leukemia

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by thedude110, Aug 5, 2006.

  1. thedude110 macrumors 68020


    Jun 13, 2005
    Sad story, as Butcher really helped bring significant attention back to the Iditarod.

    I know most people don't care about dogs running across Alaska, but her story is really worth a read. Dead at 51, but a life driven by passion, self-sacrifice and commitment.

    Someone write her biography already.
  2. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

    May 7, 2004
    Sod off
    I remember that in '91 or '92 I "watched" the Iditarod through the Cleveland Freenet with an Apple //e from our school computer lab. Our computer teacher had gone to Alaska with a PowerBook and emailed updates to us...

    The Iditarod sounds like a real challenge human and canine endurance - she must have been a tough woman.
  3. hmmfe macrumors regular

    Feb 28, 2003
    And this is a good thing? You do realize that an average of 3 dogs die each year in this "race"? Dog abuse, pure and simple.

    To put this in perspective, if the same death-rate applied to the Boston Marathon, almost 300 people would have died in the 1990s.
  4. reh macrumors 6502a

    Oct 24, 2003
    Funny how it's always the people that know nothing about mushing that spout this trash. Don't slander Butcher's thread. Start your own if you like.
  5. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Jul 16, 2002
    Weird, but one year ago almost to the day we were in Alaska watching a mushing demonstration at Susan Butcher's kennel near Fairbanks. I don't recall hearing at the time that she was ill, so either they were keeping it pretty quiet or it happened suddenly.
  6. reh macrumors 6502a

    Oct 24, 2003
    I don't know for sure how long she's been fighting it, but it's been at least a year or so. They've got the Anchorage Daily News article posted on her website.
  7. RGunner macrumors 6502a


    Jul 3, 2002
    Midnight Sun
    Its been known about for a while now...

    Its sad, made our front page as well... She was very well liked in the community.
  8. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Jul 16, 2002
    They say a year and a half. Probably her illness was being kept private.
  9. hmmfe macrumors regular

    Feb 28, 2003
    No thanks, I like this one just fine.

    No disrespect to Susan, intended. From all accounts she was a wonderful person. She was devoted to her dogs. Strangely, she was derided by her competitors for this fact.

    There were many things to admire in Susan's life. Association with the Iditarod was not one of them, however.
  10. frugivorous macrumors newbie

    Mar 14, 2008
    re Susan

    Those following a northern diet primarily of animal and fish protein, e.g.
    the Inuit, have the shortest life expectancies if one discounts
    childhood diseases, famine, war etc. May Susan in Spirit help end
    the brutal Iditarod.
    At least 137 dogs have been killed in brutal Iditarod race

    1st dog victim this year in brutal Iditarod race
    A dog on the team of rookie Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race musher John Stetson died at 1:20 a.m. today. It is the first dog death in this year's race.

    The 7-year-old male, named Zaster, was dropped at Ophir at 2 a.m. on Friday and had been transported to Anchorage. He was being treated for signs of pneumonia.

    Quote:The Iditarod is a dog sled race held every March in Alaska. The 2008 Iditarod will begin on March 1. In this race mushers (dog sled drivers) force their dogs to run 1,150 miles from Anchorage to Nome in 8 to 16 days over a grueling terrain. This is the approximate distance between Los Angeles and Seattle, New York City and Miami, Chicago and Houston. Mushers press their dogs to run at ever increasing speeds, so that the dogs get little rest or sleep. The current speed record is 8 days, 22 hours and 46 minutes,
    More race facts less than half the time it took to run the first Iditarod race. No dog wants to run so far and so fast.

    Gov. Murkowski said that the dogs rest every night. However, Iditarod rules require only two eight hour rests and one twenty-four rest. The remainder of the time, the dogs may be racing.

    Greg Cote of the Miami Herald:

    Quote:the Iditarod folks...guard their ''freedom'' to grossly overtax their canine chain-gangs.

    Dogs have died of hypothermia, strangulation in towlines, heart failure and pneumonia, and been killed when gouged by sleds and attacked by a moose. Iditarod hero and former champ Rick Swanson lost a dog in '96 after running his team through waist-deep ice water.

    The dogs are pulling sleds totaling more than 400 pounds each. To prepare, teams might pull a truck

    (A dog who is exhausted but tied to others in a team is dragged
    and smashed if he tries to fall out)

    (If they were as eager as some say, why are they whipped
    when they are too exhausted to move?)

    For list of corporate sponsors of this brutal race in which
    dogs are frozen, smashed, drowned falling into icy ponds,
    driven beyond endurance by trophy and money hungry
    human beings, see

    Dogs are unconditionally loving to those who feed them and are
    kind to them. Their unequalled love is exploited.
    It is a beautiful thing to see a dog work his heart out for
    someone he loves, and a terrible thing to see his work
    used for evil goals.

    from AdaC

    After one Poodle was frozen to the ground while a TV crew was filming... it was determined that Poodle paws and their coats, which lack an undercoat for warmth, were not suited for competition in the harsh northern climate.
  11. Counterfit macrumors G3


    Aug 20, 2003
    sitting on your shoulder
    You really did NOT need to bring this thread back just to post stuff about the Iditarod.

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