FARGO, N.D. (AP) -- Bear got lost on his way to Kentucky. But he's been found, thanks to an alert cab driver, airline officials and a newspaper story.
Nine-year-old Patrick Fogarty of Anacortes, Wash., couldn't be happier.
The same goes for employees of Doyle's Yellow Checker Cab in Fargo, who found the well-worn teddy bear after it was lost at a Northwest Airlines gate at the Minneapolis-St. Paul airport.
"I can't say enough about the people of Fargo," Patrick's father, Michael Fogarty, said Wednesday from Union, Ky., where Patrick and his sister, Eva, 5, are visiting their grandmother, Anne Fogarty.
The Fogarty family knew the teddy bear had traveled to Fargo on a Northwest Airlink flight because a woman told a gate agent in Minneapolis she had found the bear and would check in Fargo to see if anyone had reported it missing.
Cab driver Jeremy "Red" Baker, 29, discovered Bear after dropping off a fare from the airport in Fargo on Saturday morning.
"I turned around and saw it there, sitting on the floor in the back seat," said Baker. "I knew it was important to someone. I still have a clown and a bear from when I was a kid and I remember what they meant to me."
He gave the teddy bear to Doyle dispatcher Dawn Teegarden, who put it in a closet to keep until someone called to claim it.
Patrick's mother, Suzanne, e-mailed The Forum on Tuesday to see if the newspaper could help find the bear. She offered a reward.
Dispatchers Terri Mills and Barb Reppen called after reading Wednesday's newspaper story about Patrick's plight to say they thought his teddy bear was at Doyle's.
"We don't want anything for it," Mills said. "A 9-year-old boy deserves to have his buddy back."
The Forum said it would overnight Bear to Patrick, courtesy of the cab company.
"I take 'Bear' on camping trips and pretty much everywhere. When I go to bed at night, he's always in bed with me," Patrick told the newspaper.
Michael Fogarty said Bear got his son through some tough times.
"He was just under a year old when he had a rare blood disorder that hospitalized him for most of a month," Patrick's father said. "That bear was with him every second, and he bonded with that bear big time."
The elder Fogarty, an Alaska Airlines pilot, said his son discovered Bear was missing during a stopover in Cincinnati.
"When I saw Patrick's face as we were gathering our belongings to get off that plane in Cincinnati, and he realized 'Bear' wasn't there, it just broke my heart," he said.
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