Happy Trails Boo, You Will Be Missed!

Larry Whitaker, Judy Barnes and Boo, (front dog) in an NCL picture from the Blue Moon Antique Mall opening in 2006.
Larry Whitaker, Judy Barnes and Boo, (front dog) in an NCL picture from the Blue Moon Antique Mall opening in 2006.

Lovingston – Nelson County, Virginia
NCL sadly reports on what had become one of Nelson and Lovingston’s most famous K-9 celebrities. On Friday, Judy Barnes of Blue Moon Antique Mall in Lovingston, Virginia stopped by our office. While here, she let us know their longtime K-9 member of the family, Boo, passed away late in the week. He had just celebrated his 14th birthday a few days ago.

If you have ever strolled into Blue Moon, you always would see Boo right there in the doorway to greet you. What a fantastic dog!

We’ll miss him Judy & Larry, and we know all too well how it feels to lose a beloved member of the family. Ironically, almost two years to the day, we lost Millington (our beagle) in 2006. Not much makes it feel better immediately, but smile and rest assured Boo is having the time of his life now hanging out with with Millington and all of the other pets that precede him. As Yvette said about Millington when he left us; “He”s having steak with God!” Now so is Boo!

Everyone please remember Judy and Larry over the next few days. It’s tough to lose a pet that’s been with you for so, so long.


  1. Boo, I hop[e they have lots of good cookies in heaven. Thanks for helping me at the SPCA booth. All your friends at the shelter know you worked hard to point out the E6 booth to Blue Moon shoppers. God bless! We will always love you.
    Jack and Kathy Miller and all the volunteers at the SPCA Thrift Shop

  2. Dear Judy & Larry, It is so tough saying goodbye to our pals. Not only are they a part of our family, but working dogs give so much of themselves unselfishly to help us. Just know that Boo is running healthy and free with all those other great dogs, and the great part is we will be with them again someday. Until that day, may the memories make you smile, Helene Dodge, Special K9 Deputy Nelson County Sheriff’s Office

  3. So sad to lose one so close to our hearts…loving,forgiving,patient,caring,steadfast,and consistently present. Now we have to remember all those special moments when Boo was flashing us his labbie grin and wagging, knowing how much he was appreciated and wanted. I first met Boo at Wintergreen in 1997. At first, as a working dog, I wasn’t allowed to pat him, but I was finally granted permission to love Boo, and as the years passed, he was always willing to give back the hugs and kisses. He was the first “person” I looked for whenever I entered the antique mall; always glad to see me. Of course Judy and Larry knew I was glad to see them,too, but Boo came first. He will always remain in my heart; grinning and ready to give sloppy kisses. Thanks, Boo
    With Affection, Mariah Custalow

  4. Dear Judy & Larry –

    I am so, so sorry to hear of Capser Boo’s passing 🙁

    Even though I only recently got to know him it was obvious from the beginning that he was a very, very special dog! 🙂

    I know that he had a wonderful life with you but as we all know, everyone’s time comes and when his did he passed quietly and peacefully, surrounded by his loving family. We should all be so lucky.

    Boo couldn’t have asked for better humans than you both. I know that you all are hurting now and missing him terribly but take comfort in knowing that he is in a far better place than we and that you will see him again someday.

    All dogs go to heaven and I’m sure that Boo is leading the pack and looking down at you with special love.

    My heart and prayers are with you and Boo.

    With great affection and sympathy,


  5. Larry & Judy,

    Boo was a faithful companion, loyal friend and trusted servant. He was also a great teacher. Boo taught us about unconditional love. He demonstrated devotion, obedience, and service every day.

    Anatole France said – “Until one has loved an animal a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.” We are deeply grateful to Boo for “awakening our souls” – He will be sadly missed.

    Please accept my condolences for your loss.

    With all my love,

  6. Boo was an awesome dog and friend. He not only made a life of service but one of companionship and love. He’ll be missed as would any member of any family.

  7. Dear Tommy and Yvette,

    Thank you so much for the beautiful flowers you sent us to help ease the loss of our friend and family member Casper the Boo. Boo crossed over on Friday, November 14th at 12:45 a.m. He had recently celebrated his fourteenth birthday on Halloween with a special party at Blue Moon Antique Mall and Bookstore where Boo worked most every day with us. Boo was truly a magical dog in his birth, life, and death.

    Boo was born on Halloween, October 31, 1994, in Verona, VA, in the Shenandoah Valley. His original family named him after the character Baloo in the Jungle Book. When his original family was transferred, they decided to donate him to be trained as a service dog because of a school program that had taught their son about service dogs.

    Boo was trained by an organization in Grottoes called Caring Cannine Companions. A woman named Sylvia Fisher trained Boo. Larry had lost his first service dog Alex to cancer in May, 1996. When Larry decided he was ready for another dog, Baloo–now called Boo–(because of his Halloween birthday) chose Larry. Ironically, Boo had met Alex at Sylvia’s farm, and Larry has a photo of the two dogs together.

    Many people asked us over the years what service dogs do. Boo could help pull Larry’s wheelchair, pick up things that Larry dropped and could not reach off the floor, turn on and off the light switch, open doors, and provide companionship and support. One of Boo’s talents was picking up a coin off of the floor with his mouth.

    Boo and Larry began their amazing journey in August of 1996. They travelled many miles together, and everywhere they went, Boo made friends–both people and animals. He was always happy and wagging his tail and ready to accept love as well as give lots of it. He truly taught us unconditional love.

    Boo worked with Larry for eight seasons at Paramount’s Kings Dominion in Doswell, VA, in Human Resources where he helped with interviewing, orientations, and tours. Boo loved to watch people ride on roller coasters when he and Larry went for walks in the park.

    Boo spent his last few years on a beautiful farm. He enjoyed going on walks and protecting the house from all the wild things in the woods.

    Boo loved to eat, and his favorite food (when he could get some) was pizza.

    Boo died on the full moon–the Beaver moon–the harbinger of winter. A white rose bloomed on a bush next to our house on the day he died. We knew that Boo’s body had worn out and his arthritis could not tolerate the cold weather that was coming quickly. Larry told him the night that he died that it was ok to leave, and Boo knew it was his time. There was a profound stillness on our farm the night Boo died and a fog covered the fields.

    We have a huge hole in our hearts from the loss of Boo, but we know his journey has started once more. We will miss him always.

    Boo’s friends have set up a memorial fund for him at Blue Moon Antique Mall. The funds will all go to Boo’s favorite charity–Almost Home HSPCA of Nelson County. Almost Home is where we found Boo’s adopted sisters, Maisie and Sadie.
    Thanks for everyone’s support at this difficult time.

    Judy and Larry

  8. God bless you Casper the Boo! You were a very special friend to me. Spriggins and I will both miss you terribly. I hope the doggie biscuits in heaven are as good as the one’s Larry makes! Happy trails Buddy

  9. Boo, was all devotion, love and joy we will all miss him. My granddaughter was in tears at hear the news.
    Dear Larry and Judy, know that we love you both and are very sad for your loss of a truly wonderful family member.
    Jane and Sofia

  10. Larry & Judy,
    So sorry to hear of your loss. Hope Boo runs into my Dancer up in heaven and they are frolicking without the arthritis pain that plagued them both in their senior years.

  11. Grandparents will miss Boo too. As our “Granddog” he made us proud, as he was indeed a
    Grand Dog in every respect. Boo had huge paws to fill when Alex died and he did so with
    style, dignity and great love for Larry. Our entire family feels his loss.

  12. dear judy and larry,

    this is a true story called “why the white rose blooms.”

    boo loved and lived and wagged his tail and walked his trails and played. he bonded with judy and larry with every cell of his heart and soul. he knew so much, saw so much, felt so much, asked so little. he is on a new journey now, watching over larry and judy, with the angel of the rose.

    i send you love at this difficult time. so does zeke, who loved boo, too. and so does boo, to both of you. he always has and always will.

  13. Hello, beloveds. Boo was all business when he first visited us in GA. But we soon wore them (Larry and Boo) down so that with us he was allowed to be not only a dedicated working dog, but to entertain his true calling: Being A Lady’s Man! No matter his feelings about any particular lady, he always responded as the gentleman he was…so that each of us felt that we were as special to him as he was to us. The smile, the loose tongue, the easy wag of the tail! Always standing by for a scratch behind the ears (or on the rump!) as we conversed and shared lunches or dinners…as patient as he could be while he awaited a few french fries!

    He was part of the big family that we’ve all continued to expand throughout the wedding of J&L. As a beloved family member, he will be missed greatly by us all! Judy and Larry, you have my sympathy. It is not easy letting go of such a darling. May your memories build a bridge that keeps you always in his company. Remember he still lives here now in your hearts…heck, in all of our hearts.

    But he had been leaving for a while now. I could tell this the few times that I saw him over the last year. I’m sure he felt that once he saw you safely through getting hitched that his work here was nearly done. He must have felt great confidence in your ability to get on without him…after the great display of love that we all witnessed during your wedding! He managed to hang in there for the final birthday so he could celebrate once more with you.

    Now he still celebrates though you can’t always see him… he celebrates the freedom to be his full spirit self! No more limitations! So much more than a dog! I am certain that he puts a paw up to each of you to ask you not to be sad, not to continue to mourn…but to celebrate his life and his newfound freedom to be all he can be! I can just feel the light coming from him through to you. So embrace it as it is his gift to you. Go on and be happy! Run like a frisky dog with your toy and don’t let the world or your sadness take it from you! Always remember the JOY! Thank you, Boo, for this incredible outpouring of love to your family! Thanks to you all for sharing his life and your lives with me and your other Georgia “family” members! Love to you always, Beth

  14. Dear Judy and Larry,
    I am SO sorry to hear about Boo. My Sushi died just a few months ago, very unexpectedly, and I know from real life experience how hard it is to lose one our “furry babies”. My cats Sushi, Truffles and Ginger are now friends with Boo and I know they are happy. Love to you and Larry and I miss you.



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