BRICK, N.J. — Jim and Marie Zangara didn’t have much hope Tuesday morning. It had been more than two weeks since their dog Chunk went missing and there hadn’t been any sightings of him for more than a week.
But at 7:30 a.m., they got two unexpected calls that changed everything.
“It’s a dream come true,” Marie Zangara said. “It’s like a Hollywood movie, this ending. Because he was lost in the marsh for so long and then he winds up in the bay. He actually swam across the entire Barnegat Bay. Luckily he’s a strong dog and this worked out very nicely. ”
The first call came from two women who were jogging near Trader’s Cove Marina and had seen the missing dog flyers. They called to say they saw the golden retriever jump into the bay and start swimming. They then ran to a boater and asked him to help.
The Zangaras heard from that boater, Jim Mathis, who was on a fishing boat in Barnegat Bay near the Mantoloking Bridge. He couldn’t get Chunk on his boat, but he promised them that he would stay close to Chunk until police arrived.
“He was scared and seemed like he didn’t want to be rescued,” Mathis said. “I was able to get a hold of his collar, but then his collar fell off and that’s when I called the owners and just stayed with him, since he was right in the middle of the thoroughfare where all the boats go through.”
The Zangaras called the police to let them know their dog was in the bay. Moments later, state troopers Vincent Ferdinandi and…