Where did you serve and what did you do?
I was a combat medic in the U.S. Air Force. I’ve had various assignments in the United States and served in various deployments overseas.
Tell us how your dog is helping you continue #StillServing in your community.
My service dog Ava and I represent “Healing Paws for Warriors,” a nonprofit I co-founded which provides veterans with PTSD, TBI, and MST with certified service dogs trained to a veteran’s specific needs. This is at no-cost to the veteran. The dogs are rescues, surrenders, or service-bred, and the veterans will spend 2-3 months training with the dog. We are able to provide this as a result of a military-friendly, generous community. Donations, grants, and fundraisers make this life-changing service to our veterans possible (and free).
Why do you do it?
I am a disabled veteran who suffered for years. After going through a service dog program and receiving my own service dog, I could personally attest to what a change my partner made in my quality of life. I wanted to sort of “pay it forward” and help other veterans to live, not merely exist. We like to say that this program saves lives at both ends of the leash.