Where did you serve and what did you do?
I served 24 years in the Navy and the Air National Guard. I was a C-130 Tactical Aeromedical Evacuation flight nurse in the Air National Guard who deployed to both Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm.
Tell us how your dog is helping you continue #StillServing in your community.
Orleans is a labrador retriever who was trained by the organization America’s Vet Dogs. After the application process and acceptance the waitlist was nearly 2 years to get Orleans. We became partners this year and she has been a lifesaver for me. I live with significant medical issues and PTSD. Orleans is a medical service dog who has helped give me more confidence to get out and about more. Though her primary function is to assist my medical needs, she has also helped my PTSD symptoms. She brings strength and comfort when I am out in community volunteering or at veteran functions. Orleans fulfills so many needs and is quite a crowd pleaser for others around me. I can’t imagine what life was like without her.
Why do you do it?
As a registered nurse I have cared for the sick, injured, and wounded the majority of my life. It was a career but also a calling to give back to others. I believe in giving back to other veterans and to our community.