Sanitation worker helps to reunite Borough Park toddler with his beloved stuffed animal

Posted: Updated:

A desperate plea from a family in the Borough Park section of Brooklyn was answered by a sanitation worker after their youngest child lost his treasured toy.

On Monday, Department of Sanitation of New York worker Jason Petrino returned “Puppy,” a beloved stuffed toy that belongs to 2-year-old Joey.

“Just to see him smile and be happy with the stuffed animal he's had since he was born, it’s a good feeling,” Jason Petrino said.

The toddler’s mother was running errands with him on Friday when he dropped the toy. The family immediately put a post on Facebook, but never thought it would amount to anything.

“We looked everywhere, like everywhere, all over the place like an hour and a half because he really loves the puppy, and he feeds him, he takes care of Puppy and he was looking for Puppy for so much and so long,” said the toddler’s father.

Petrino saw the Facebook post and had a hunch that it could be in a particular garbage bin in the neighborhood.

“I know from working with sanitation that, over there, there’s a high-end litter basket and I just said to myself ‘I know for a fact that it's in the basket.’ So I started slowly emptying it out and then when I got to the bottom, I actually found it, I couldn't believe it, I was shocked,” Petrino recalled.

Sparing the stuffed pooch from the landfill was not an easy task when dealing with trash from close to nine million New Yorkers.

“I think it's fate that Jason was able to see the flyer, and then he was able to actually work in that basket truck that night, that particular night and said, ‘you know what? let me take my time looking through this,’” said Brooklyn South Department of Sanitation of New York Deputy Chief Christopher Linares.

As a thank you, Joey gave a drawing to Petrino.

The young boy will hold onto his toy extra tight from now on.


sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."