GEORGETOWN TOWNSHIP, MI — Steve Frody and his family looked out a back window in surprise Thanksgiving morning as they sat eating breakfast and noticed a deer swimming across Cedar Lake, right out the back door.
What happened minutes later, around 10 a.m., would surprise them far more.
Frody heard a splash and then a loud crash.
He walked outside to see glass all around a neighbor’s front door. The large doe had made its way through.
The homeowners were away, so Frody picked up the phone to alert others on the street.
He called Tim Contreras, who lives directly next to the damaged house. Contreras looked through his window and saw what he thought was a dog inside.
“Then it hit me: They don’t have a dog. It’s a deer in that house,” Contreras recalled.
He made it through the neighbor’s broken front door and found the animal walking around. Contreras assessed the scene.
“I thought, ‘What are we going to do?'” he said. “It’s like, ‘Whoa, back up. We don’t want to have that attack us.'”
The deer moved quickly between the kitchen and the living room, which had “beautiful” white carpet and couches, he said.
Stains were on the carpet. Blood was smeared around the door frame and a lamp was knocked onto a couch.
The doe already was wet from swimming across part of Cedar Lake. The house was a mess.
“It looks like a murder scene, it really does,” said Frody’s daughter, Larissa, who stood outside and watched through windows.
Larissa Frody moved around to the backyard as she watched the doe jump, forcing itself against a rear upstairs window. The window, which opened with a crank mechanism, gave way without breaking and the deer escaped onto a deck.
She looked on as the animal leaped down from a height neighbors estimated as about 14 feet. The doe stumbled, then ran directly into the other side of Cedar Lake, in back of the house.
Neighbors watched it swim across, then run into a nearby field, apparently fine.
“It was crazy,” Larissa Frody said.
Ottawa County Sheriff’s deputies arrived not long after and boarded up the front door. They alerted the homeowners to what had happened.
Tim Contreras and his family went back to their dinner preparations. He could only imagine what may have happened if someone had been inside at the time—the fear and chaos that would have resulted.
“If you’re sitting there, watching TV, then … crash.”