Friday, May 14, 2010

And Then There were Five (legs)

Andy met Manna, a rescued two year old Border Collie mix, in May 2010 almost 5 1/2 years after is Alive Day. Andrew Butterworth is a retired U.S. Army National Guard Sergeant who proudly served our country in Iraq. Andy's life was forever changed on November 15. Members of their platoon were on patrol near the town of Tuz Kharmatu, north of Baghdad, doing reconnaissance on a place they'd never been before in the turret of a Bradley fighting vehicle, an armored personnel carrier. There were six soldiers in the back of the vehicle and 20 soldiers in their convoy, but Andy and his lieutenant were the only two seriously injured; the insurgents were killed.

Andy was familiar with Carolina Canines; he and recipient Ed Salau (Tales & Tails Christmas 2007), 1st LT NC Army National Guard, Retired, have been through a lot together. Injured when the grenade exploded between them on that fateful day in November 2004, Andy and Ed journeyed together on their path of healing from room mates at Walter Reed, seeing who had their stitches out first, who healed the fastest, who received their temporary leg first to receiving their Purple Hearts. And, now, Andy follows a similar path as Ed, having gained a new four-legged friend to help him with his mobility.

The partnering of Andy with Service Dog Manna is the 8th pairing of a wounded veteran with a service dog from the Carolina Canines for Veterans (CCV) program. Manna was trained by the prisoners at the Marine Corp Base Camp Lejeune Brig. Manna's story is like many discarded dogs. She was found on the streets of Wilmington, NC by a former employee of Queensboro Shirt Company severely underweight and missing most of her hair. When the person could not keep her, Manna was turned over to Tails U Win rescue for care and adoption. In November 2008, Carolina Canines was looking to add dogs into the CCV program, Manna, formerly know as Madison, was a good candidate.

Through this pairing of Veteran and Service Dog, one thing has prevailed, Andy's sense of humor. Fondly known as Butter, Andy now has his own "bread" to share life with. Andy is currently enrolled in college in Florida. He and Manna will return home to continue their bonding and work together as Andy learns to use his new friend to assist with his daily needs giving him four new legs.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Walk for Those Who Can't Thank You

Our fourth annual Walk For Those Who Can’t was a great success, thanks to you!

Thanks to the support of our sponsors and donors, teams and individuals walkers we were able to raise almost $50,000. There were 37 teams, 450 walkers and 300 dogs joining us for this years’ event. The money raised will be used to support our mission and help us continue to help others.

Thanks to our sponsors including Home Health Testing, Talk Inc., The Queensboro Shirt Company, DogLiving, WECT, Brightmore of Wilmington, Wilmington Orthotics & Prosthetics, Ruth Arnold Signs & Graphics, Port City Java, Sunrise Broadcasting along with SunnyFM and Surf 98.3, Papa John's, Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Realty , Harris Teeter- Long Leaf Mall and Oleander, Health Source of Wilmington, and PawPrints Magazine.

A special thank you to our co-masters of ceremony, Sally Pressman and Rhoda Griffis of the Lifetime TV series Army Wives and to Mayor Bill Saffo, Leslie Smith and DJ Jay Tatum; your support of our programs is appreciated.

Thank you to the donors of fabulous items for the raffle including Hilton Wilmington Riverside, Jerry's Fine Dining, Porters Neck Yoga Spa, Residence Inn Landfall, Riverboat Landing, and Ruth Chris Steak House.

To our hospitality sponsors The Bagel Basket, Costco, Danette Brown- Pampered Chef, Jamie Swanson-Pampered Chef , Great Harvest Bread Company, Hercules Bags, Inc., Indian Spring Water, and McAlisters Deli, thank you.

Thank you to Carrabba's Italian Grill for the gathering for the Top Team, The Dawg Pile. And, South Beach Grill for the gift certificate for the Top Individual Fundrasier, Nina Dunn.

Thank you to the Veterinary practices that sponsored the dog bandanas: Pine Valley Animal Hospital, The Mobil Vet - House Calls for Pets, Forest Hills Veterinary Hospital, Coastal Carolina Animal Hospital.

And, thank you to the Goody Bag sponsors including Casey Petraceuticals , Great Clips, Kornerstone Pizza, Pet's Pal Inn and Westco Woodworks.

Thank you to the Team Captains and Team and the individuals for their support of our programs and raising money for the Walk for Those Who Can’t. And, the thank you would not be complete without extending our sincere appreciation to the Walk for Those Who Can’t Co-Chairs, Committees and Volunteers. As a non-profit we rely on the generosity of individuals like you coming together to help us help continue to help others through fundraising events.

We look forward to you joining with us to take strides for independence at the 5th Walk For Those Who Can’t on March 26, 2011.