Mike Kovic & the Dalmations

Looking back over some of the millions, yes, literally millions, of words I wrote for The Courier over nearly a quarter of a century, it’s great fun to see the names and stories of dear friends and recognize once again how very clever they are and what wonderful neighbors they have been. The Mike Kovic family in Highlands is just one example of a pair of pretty wonderful parents who did an outstanding job raising wonderful offspring…anyone admiring the wall on Miller Street hill already knows the talent of son, Jimmy and everybody in Highlands in the 1970s and 1980s knows how terrific the entire family is.

A story in The Courier in January 1976, told the story of the patriarch in the court room.

Mick Kovic had to appear before Municipal Court Judge on a complaint about his dog running loose.

First of all, Judge Kenneth Walsh, who generally sits in Middletown, had to appear instead of long time Municipal Court Judge Ronald Horan, because it was determined there was a conflict of interested between Mike and Ronnie. Probably because they were good friends.

Secondly, Mike had received his complaint through the mail from the police department, along with a copy of Clancy the dog’s license number as proof, police pointed out, it was indeed Clancy, a Dalmatian, who was running loose back in August.

Not so quick, argued a very astute Mr. Kovic, as he set about explaining his innocence, and Clancy’s, to the judge.

In the first place, he argued, I had three Dalmatians at our home this summer. How would the officer know it was specifically Clancy who was out and about at 3 a.m.?

Then he went on to explain to the listening Judge. You see, Your Honor, Clancy is an old dog, she’s 10. “And she’s got arthritis real bad. She’d never walk down that hill because she wouldn’t be able to make it up again.” The Kovics live on Miller Hill, the charge was for a block below on Highland avenue. The officer was relying on the statements of a passing motorist in a white van who said it was Kovic’s dog.

The Judge checked the record and found indeed that since 1975 not one, but three Dalmatians were residents in the Kovic home, all properly licensed, and the charge couldn’t very well stand. Besides, said Judge Walsh, if Clancy is 10 in dog’s years, then she’s in her 70s as we see it. “And I know I wouldn’t be able to make it back up that hill, so I can see where Clancy couldn’t either.”

And Clancy and Mike went home happy.


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