American Humane Hero Dog Awards - 2017 Finalists
Pierce — Guide / Hearing
Charity Partner: Fidelco Guide Dog Foundation
Location: Palm Bay, Florida
While serving with the U.S. Army 82nd Airborne Division during the first Gulf War (Operation Desert Storm), Don sustained an injury that eventually claimed his vision. In the more than two decades that followed, Don navigated through life with his white cane, along with the support of his wife, Peggy, and two children. As an experienced cane traveler who moved about the world quite well, Don had not seriously considered getting a guide dog until one day he now remembers as a turning point in his journey.
Last year, on a family vacation, Don and his son, Jordan, set out to explore historical monuments together. At the conclusion of the trip, Don asked Jordan to describe his favorite part of the tour to which the twelve-year-old responded, “Dad, I wasn’t paying much attention…I wanted to make sure you didn’t fall.” Heartbroken at this admission, Don knew Jordan needed the freedom to be a kid and not a sighted guide. And the payoff in having his guide dog, Pierce has been even greater than relieving this burden from his son; Don is experiencing life with refreshed independence and freedom. His wife Peggy shares, “I have seen a new confidence in Don and I can’t thank Fidelco enough for. Don’s guide dog is a very loving companion and dedicated to his work. We have all fallen in love.”