Man pretends to have rescued the rabbit from Southern California wildfire

There’s no end to the human capacity to deceive.

Remember the story about the kind young man who, on December 6, stopped to rescue a wild rabbit caught between the raging flames of the terrible Thomas Fire on one side, and a freeway full of cars on the other?

See “Man risks life to save wild rabbit from Southern California fire

Would you believe a man named Oscar Gonzalez (some news accounts have his name as Gonzales) actually pretended to be the rescuer?

The day after the rescue, on December 7, 2017, Gonzalez’s girl friend contacted NBC4, claiming he was the man captured on video rescuing the rabbit. Gonzalez, from the Pacoima neighborhood in Los Angeles, even did an interview with the station, wearing a red hoodie like what the rescuer was wearing in the video.

Gonzalez said he rescued the rabbit because “I love animals myself. I didn’t want the rabbit to go through the fire.” He said there were two rabbits, one white and one black with white spots. The white rabbit “ran into his arms.” Gonzalez said he dropped it off in a safer area where there were no flames. The rabbit then scurried away.

Wild rabbits are typically brown or grey in color. Only domestic rabbits are white, or black with white spots.

Even after reports surfaced saying Gonzalez was not the man in the video, he and his girl friend still insist he was the one seen in the video.

From an enhanced image of the man in the original video, NBC4 determined that Caleb Wadnan, not Oscar Gonzalez, is the rabbit’s rescuer.

Wadnan told NBC4 that he was driving along the freeway to see the flames when he caught sight of the scared rabbit: “I just ran after it. I had a lot of faith in me at the time-being. So I was just focused on the life at hand rather than the flames around me.”

Wadnan brought the brown rabbit to Conejo Valley Veterinary Hospital.

Montanna Harrington, an employee at the veterinary hospital, confirmed Wadnan’s story. Harrington told Huffington Post that a man wearing the same outfit as seen in the viral video brought in an injured wild rabbit. The man said he had rescued the bunny from the Thomas fire on Highway 101— the same location where the viral video was filmed.

Veterinarian Duane Tom said the rabbit was suffering from serious burns, with much of her fur singed off. And for the record, Tom said he disagrees with people who say the rabbit didn’t need help: “She definitely needed medical attention.”

Wadnan recently reunited with the rabbit he saved, now being cared for at the California Wildlife Center in Malibu. The center tweeted an update on the rabbit’s condition:

We are happy to report that the rabbit rescued from the fires in that now famous video is showing improvement but isn’t out of the woods yet. She suffered burns to her ears, feet, and tail.

Meet the famous and very lucky rabbit!


38 responses to “Man pretends to have rescued the rabbit from Southern California wildfire

  1. Glad the truth came out.
    But, regarding the color of rabbits, where I live we have wild brown rabbits. Those same rabbits turn white in the winter to blend in with the heavy snow. It makes them less visible to prey.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. America land of opportunities even if that opportunity is to deceive people….

    Liked by 2 people

  3. And if I were the sort of guy who’d acknowledged the elephant in the room, I might ask: “What would anyone wish to wager that Oscar Gonzalez is in this country illegally?”

    Just a hunch, we’ll call it.

    ~ D-FensDogG
    STMcC Presents ‘Battle Of The Bands’

    Liked by 3 people

  4. As a rule, all animals are terrified by fire and haven’t much idea what to do about it, which is why we sometimes see them so disoriented they run into one to certain death. It was amazing that this wild one allowed Caleb –who looks to be a sterling fellow– approach her, never mind pick her up w/o scratching him away. Gonzales… not so sterling, likely not even silver-plated!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Joseph . . . wonderful post. I am glad that Caleb is such a “sterling fellow” that he put his life on the line to help this little creature. He should be getting some kind of citizenship metal.

      When the original story came out, Caleb had declined to be interviewed as to his valor on behalf of this sweet little creature . . . then you have the no account, chisslin’ Gonzales sweep in to take the glory. I am glad that others were able to verify who the real hero of the day was!

      We certainly do need more young people who have this level of compassion.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Reblogged this on kommonsentsjane and commented:

    Reblogged on kommonsentsjane/blogkommonsents.

    It is always “the act of deceiving” that gets in the way of the truth.

    The reason for all of the fires is – the Jerry Brown’s Dems and Obama want people and immigrants to start over “fresh” on equal footing – except for the few will dictate to the slaves in CA.



    Liked by 4 people

    • kommonsentsjane . . . I think there is much to agree with regarding the statement you made . . . “The reason for all of the fires is–the Jerry Brown’s Dems and Obama want people and immigrants to start over ‘fresh’ on equal footing–except for the few will dictate to the slaves in CA.” I predict that those who get an insurance settlement, but who are not allowed to rebuild on their own property . . . or the government wants to relocate them to areas where small cracker box homes are to be built to house far more people in much less space . . . these people will take their insurance settlements and move out of California. They will purchase either land to build new homes, or purchase ready built homes. I am left wondering if in addition to insurance monies from the loss of their homes, if they will not be able to sell off their land also. You are right, this is an effort to install “Cumbia” settlements where the rich, or middle class are forced to live with others that they would not normally live among, and live in circumstances that they would not otherwise choose for themselves.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. There are no wild white or black rabbits here in SoCal in the coastal ranges.
    They’re brown year around. Like the hillsides are for 10 months of the year.

    Apparently they didn’t cover this in the Common Core curriculum before Oscar dropped out to become a faux virtue signaler, and clearly the only rabbits he’s ever seen were in pet shops.

    What a lying schmuck.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. The cause of these fires is the fault of CA who refuses to thin the forest and do controlled burns. In the end more trees are burned, more homes and lives destroyed and more wildlife murdered. It is not climate change it is the wackos that refuse to follow proper forestry. This is also why the spotted owl is endangered. The forest is too dense for them to hunt for food. Thousands of birds are murdered by those horrid wind mill farms that are inefficient at best. CA is a haven for those who are really about controlling all human activity not the environment. I wouldn’t live in CA for all the money in the world.

    Liked by 2 people

    • We’ve had that problem here in Nevada,since the Federal Bureau of Land Management (the REAL BLM) took control of the public lands here. For 200 years+- the Ranchers handled it by grazing their livestock wherever the range grass height warranted it. When lightning fires DID start,they burned a few acres of grass and went out-out of fuel. THEN,as expected,when the Government took control of the lands,the livestock was not allowed on the public land to graze,the range grass and sage brush grew,and grew,and grew;then,when a fire started there would be a gracious PLENTY of fuel he quarter million fires,so bad we now have an official FIRE SEASON.
      I side with the RANCHERS-Disband the BLM,let the Ranchers’ livestock graze where they’re NEEDED.

      Liked by 3 people

      • BTW-the rabbits are obviously domesticated rabbits,possibly “freed” by their owner to fend for themselves when the fire closed on the owner’s home.


        • As a long time resident of Nv, I agree with you about the ranchers, but the photo of the rabbit taken to the vet, is a wild, not domesticated, brown rabbit.

          Liked by 1 person

          • I think the picture was just an example of what the wild rabbits look like. They said the two rescued ones were black and white.


            • Yep, I’ve shot enough jack rabbits in my time to know the difference. The ranchers used to give us free .22 ammo to thin ’em out. The hillsides used to turn grey with them some years.

              They have more cottontails in California, but they have Jackrabbits too. The cottontails are real rabbits, the Jacks are “hares”.


            • Good grief, truck. Re-read my post. The pic isn’t “an example of what wild rabbits look like”. The pic is of the BROWN wild rabbit that Caleb Wadnan rescued and took to the vet hospital. It’s the imposter, Oscar Gonzalez, who claimed that there were 2 rabbits, one white (whom he rescued, then released), one black & white.


      • truck . . . I am 100% with you on the travesty of the BLM running ranchers off their lands. I just wish that more people knew of the duplicitous actions of the BLM in regards to the Bundy family. Their trial has ended in a “mistrial” due to the outrageous actions of the prosecution, but now the family must pony up even more monies to defend themselves in the next trial which is scheduled to start next year. People need to know that the BLM is all about stealing the rights of private citizens, and not so much about really supervising the land.

        Liked by 3 people

        • Not only were the BLM involved in the hostile actions against this family, but the FBI, and a swat team from California was also there (supposedly for training.) The FBI provided “sharp shooters” which they originally denied, but later said were there to keep peace. Some of the sharp shooters actually trained their laser sites on some of the Bundy family, including children.

          I fear for this family . . . at what point do you go bankrupt from defending yourself from these seemingly rogue entities?

          Liked by 3 people

          • True, the BLM was given way too much power under Obama. I feel for the Bundy family, having lived there and supported and cared for that land for over a century. They were the last of 53 ranchers that had been forced off the land. They put in water supplies, built fences and loved that land. They were caretakers. Them the gov. Decided to price them out of the market.
            The government also tried to pull a fast one by loading up those cattle, illegally, to take to Utah to sell. Cattle moved across state lines must be verified and a brand inspector has to be on site to verify the cattle. The government ignored all the rules and Utah told them hell no.
            Just another illegal travesty of Harry Reid’s and his paid off posse.
            The Bundy’s had preemptive rights to that range.
            The ranchers yearly allotment went toward BLM wages, they had paid their yearly fees.
            One of the judges on TV said once a territory became a state, the Feds must surrender all claims to that land.
            A lot of this goes back to the Sagebrush rebellion. And the NV public lands ownership act NRS321.596 of the 70’s. And even Reagan 1980 turnover.
            There is much more to this. But it boils down to government overstepping.

            Liked by 3 people

            • Glenn47 . . . I attempted to donate monies toward their defense. I even called a number which I found online . . . but that legal firm no longer represents any of the Bundys. If you even become aware of who their current legal team is, I would love to have the information.

              I personally feel that Mr Bundy, and his whole family, including Roy Finicum who was murdered here in Oregon by FBI sharp shooters are stepping up and giving their all to try to preserve private property rights, and to force these government entities to adhere to the Constitution. We do not need agencies that act like “guerilla bands” such as those found in third world countries.

              The action on the part of the BLM was a criminal action against this family. I just wish that the majority of people knew the entire background behind this. I think that anyone who really knew everything that went on would be on the side of the Bundy family.

              Let me wish you a Merry Christmas and a Wonderful New Year, I really enjoy having your input on so many of the articles that come up.


    • Behind The Green Mask by Rosa Koire. A UN Agenda 21/30 primer.

      Liked by 2 people

    • WHOA, bracken… are so far off base. I was recently put on evacuation notice b/c dirt-bike rider in the Cleveland National Forest—so “on-hands” managed with controlled burns, et al that we are regularly notified of the “burn days,” wrecked into a tree on a trail and his hot bike exhaust sparked a HUGE fire that threatened our basin town below. Had the winds been high that day….I’d have certainly been like the victims of the Thomas fire and burned to the ground—the flames came over the rim of the mountain within a MILE of my front door and I have pictures to prove it. This was a case, as some are, of mis-management of the USE of the National Forest: why was there ANY dirt bike or other human mechanical use allowed during this high fire hazard in our National Forest? This same thing happened not long ago farther North from us along the 215 freeway on Nationally-controlled land. According to YOUR assessment—things like this are the fault of CA mismanagement of the public lands…..but…HELLO THERE….the fires that have threatened MY life and property for the last 30 years of living here in CA are FEDERALLY managed lands/forest.

      And then there is this: Most of our fires in CA are set by human hand by “accident” with recreational vehicles, firearms, or illegal “campfires” (most set…code for—ILLEGAL ALIENS who are camping out in our local or state or national parks setting campfires and walking away from them…this happens almost for 90% of the devastating fires here in CA). AND…we have been under a NO BURN code here in So. CA for YEARS…and yet….my husband and I have had to call the fire dept./confront/threaten our neighbors on THREE occassions in the last 3 weeks for building freaking BONFIRES on their properties while they “party on” (alcohol inclusive…not a good mix) for some special event or other. We might be the neighborhood grinches on this….but, I am not willing to sacrifice everything I’ve ever worked for, maybe even my life, the lives of my pets, so that my mentally-challenged and socially ignorant neighbors can throw a big alcoholic drunken party around a bonfire in their backyard.

      Liked by 2 people

      • CalGirl . . . Never be afraid to speak up for yourself or your family. We would rather have you alive to fight another day, than mourn your passing, and have your neighbors be happy that you did not stand up for what is right. Unfortunately, when people are drinking, they lose all control of sane thinking–thats exactly when trouble comes a kockin’


  8. Pro tip for fakers, wild bunny:

    Liked by 3 people

  9. What a pendejo…

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Another illegal? to be deported.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Well there are deceivers and then there are low down, lower than a snakes belly deceivers. That is as low as you can get to try to take credit for someone else’s heroism. We can safely bet this scum is probably amongst the worst of cowards. Maybe he thought he would take false credit so we would all say, we need more of those brave Mexicans in our country!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. “Conejo Valley”…. heheheh.
    Anybody else remember a bit of Spanish? Good name for the Vet Hospital.


  13. The truth always prevails. It takes a good kind hearted young man to risk it and save a bunny, seems it was not a big deal to him, on the other hand I hope the hoody idiot is clean and not an illegal or else his ass will be on fire and booted to where he came from.


  14. Cogito…

    I was gonna say the same thing.

    “Rabbit” Valley Veterinary Hospital.

    Liked by 1 person

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