I'd like to thank Farley, the Patterson's sheepdog who passed away a few years ago. It's no secret that I read For Better or For Worse every day and have since I was a very young lad. Lynn Johnston's strip has that perfect blend of realism, humour and Canadiana and the characters age in real-time enabling fans to literally watch the Patterson's age and grow.
Farley was a member of the family, always there. He'd play with Michael, Elizabeth and April, get into mischief and perform general dog duties. When April was four, we were witness to a heart wrenching story line that elevated Farley to martyr status. April was playing by the river and fell in. Farley jumped in to keep her above the water until help arrived. Farley saved her life, but the exertion and cold was too much for the old dog. His heart stopped and John ended the strip by saying "I didn't think that a heart so big would ever stop beating".
This story line might be my all time favourite in the series, and there have been some exceptional ones. Thanks again, Farley.