Passerby comes to the rescue when driver strikes Raleigh man and his dog

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A Raleigh man and his dog are recovering after a driver plowed into them Wednesday morning.

Kunal Chablani was on a routine morning walk with his sheltie, Tony, when they were hit in the crosswalk at Saint Mary's Street and Hillsborough Street.

"The next thing I knew, I was in the air," Chablani said.

Chablani lay bleeding in the street, his nose possibly broken and his chest bruised.

All he could think about was Tony.

"I saw the car running over him, and I heard him shriek," he said.

Eyewitnesses raced to help, including Francine Cronin who was driving by.

"He looked very much in duress and upset, and I just looked at him and I told him 'don't worry. I'll take care of your dog,' " Cronin said.

Tony was rushed to N.C. State's Veterinary Medical Center.

"They were worried about his spleen being burst, so they said for us to even consider surgery, we have to do a CT scan and that's $1,000. I said just do it. I'll pay for it," Cronin said.

The surgery lasted more than six hours and cost $10,000.

Tony has several broken bones and faces about six weeks of intensive therapy.

Cronin has started a 'Go Fund Me' page along with Pullen Memorial Baptist Church to help foot the bill.

UPDATE: As of 2 p.m. Saturday, ABC11 viewers have helped raise $6,983

RELATED: Want to help? Contribute to Tony's Go Fund Me account

"It was the right thing to do," Cronin said. "There's no greater Christmas gift than knowing that the dog survived and that he's reunited with his owner."

"I'm just so grateful, and I want her to know if she ever needs help with anything I'm there," Chablani said.

The driver of the vehicle was charged with failing to yield the right of way.

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