Long-lost dog found 1,200 miles away reunited with Brooklyn family

SEFFNER, Florida (WABC) -- An emotional reunion took place between a family from Brooklyn and their long-lost dog that ran away after the tragic death of a teenager.

Sinatra once belonged to 16-year-old Zion Willis, who died in a gun accident in November of 2015.

The 5-year-old blue-eyed brown and white Husky ran away about 18 months ago and somehow ended up in a Florida neighborhood, where the Verrill family took him in.

"I was at my bus stop, and there was a dog coming down the road," 13-year-old Rose Verrill said. "I immediately texted my mother and my sister, and my sister ran out and got him."

Rose and mom Denise used Sinatra's chip to locate the owner, but the phone number was wrong by one digit. So they turned to social media and found the Willis family.

"Then she described him, and I was just elated that it was possibly him," Lesmore Willis said. "(Zion and Sinatra) loved each other. I think there's no other way to describe it."

"It's very bittersweet," Rose said. "He was really a great guest to have."

The emotional homecoming happened Monday, but it remains a mystery how he traveled 1,200 miles from Brooklyn to Seffner, which is near Tampa.

Lesmore said having Sinatra home is better than Christmas.

"He's put on a couple of pounds like me and he's in great condition," he said. "Whoever had him, thank you for what you did for our family, for taking care of Sinatra."

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