Iowa father Robert Joseph Quick gave up his life to save his 5-year-old daughter from being mauled by a large dog -- an act of heroism that has captured national attention.
The young girl was attacked by the dog near a home in Fort Madison, suffering serious injuries. As the New York Post noted, police who were called to the scene arrived to find the 33-year-old man lying on his back in the front yard in the grips of the large dog, which would not release the victim. Officers were then forced to shoot the dog to stop the attack, the report noted.
As the responding officers began to administer aid to the family members, the wounded man then sacrificed himself to save his daughter. He instructed the deputies to treat his daughter instead of him, and officers began giving the girl first aid.
A public statement from the police department said that the father's actions saved the life of his daughter.
"Mr. Quick had defended his daughter and undoubtedly saved her life by his actions," the Lee County Sheriff's Office said in a news release.
Reports noted that Quick suffered a heart attack on the scene. After his daughter had been treated, Quick was later taken to a nearby hospital, where he was declared dead.The report did not note whether the dog died after being shot, or whether the owner of the animal could be facing charges. The circumstances of the attack were not entirely clear, including where or when it took place.
Quick left behind a wife and four children, an obituary noted. He was remembered as a man who loved being with his children and spending time outdoors. Friends also noted that he was a very generous man.
"He enjoyed working on and collecting cars, camping, music, fishing, mushrooming and spending time on the river," the obituary read. "Joe especially loved his children."
The Iowa father's heroism has received national attention, with many news outlets picking up on the story and links shared across social media. A GoFundMe page set up to help cover his funeral costs has attracted more than $15,000, breezing past the goal of $6,000 and attracting donations from throughout the country. The fundraiser continued to grow as the story gained national traction, with hundreds of dollars pouring in every hour as many shared the story of Quick's heroism on social media.
Police said that Robert Joseph Quick's death remains under investigation.