Bobby, a disabled Army veteran in Florida, wrote this letter to our founder. This match was made through our partner, Lake City Humane Society.
I greatly appreciate your efforts and concerns for shelter animals and veterans. The benefits all around go way past even the elements you have listed.
When I met Mr. Red, it was about 30 days after having had two operations. No big combat story, just things we confront in life.
To add to the stress of the operations (actually 20 days in between), I lost my best friend. Two days after the first operation, Mr. Pooh, my husky of 14 years, had to be put to sleep. My mental state was at an all time low. I didn’t care much about the future.
A friend of mine asked if I wanted to go to the shelter and just look. That was the first time I met Red. I really liked the cute little smile he had, a lot like Mr. Pooh. I felt like I was drawn to Red and kept coming back to him. I wanted to take Red home then and there, but I needed more recovery time from surgery.
“Several of my friends have commented about the difference in me – a lot of smiles.”
I was still having a difficult emotional time from the loss of Mr. Pooh. I broke down and cried at the shelter office; the people there were very kind to me. I went back four or five more times. I went to Mr. Pooh’s grave and told him about Red. I think Mr. Pooh would approve of Red and his adoption.
Now, one day at a time, Red and I are becoming friends. He loves to walk, run and play with his squeak toys. Several of my friends have commented about the difference in me – a lot of smiles. As I am writing this, Red is snoozing on my left foot. At night he checks on me from time to time. Having that rubber nose push on my cheek is a good feeling. I am disabled – hearing impaired – and when my hearing aids are out I don’t hear much. I lost my hearing working around jet engines while in the service. I worked near jets in the Vietnam era. It is a good feeling to know Red will let me know if something goes wrong. I am working on his certification as a companion animal.
Anyway, this is all a work in progress. Your concept is really wonderful. I will try to help in any way I can.
“He is a very loving and wonderful friend.”
I am enclosing two photos of Red and me. The third is a picture of Jasman, Red’s friend and also from the Lake City Animal Shelter. Both of them get along just great.
I guess it’s time to play. Red just brought me Mr. Squeaker. Again I wish to say that I really appreciate your ideas and compassion for God’s critters.
P.S.: When I was at the veterinarian the other day with Red for a check up, a lady at the counter was talking to the lady behind the counter. She asked what kind of dog Red was. I overheard what she said; I winked at her and said, “He is a very loving and wonderful friend.”
Ms. Bobby and Mr. Red