Here's the newspaper headline that caught my eye this morning:
Blind man, guide dog safe after subway track scare
|John Minchillo/The Associated Press|
Ah, perfect for a still-dark-out coffee. A nice, heartwarming story of a heroic dog. Something to feel a little holiday glow in the morning.
I read the whole article. Read about Cecil fainting and falling onto the subway track, despite the efforts of Orlando. "He tried to hold me up," as Cecil grew weak. Orlando followed his master onto the track, licking him and jumping in the roar of the oncoming train.
Orlando and Cecil lay in the trench between the rails as the train passed overhead.
"The dog saved my life," said Cecil from his hospital bed. Ah yes, a miraculous story for the holidays.
Wait, you haven't gotten to the heartwarming part yet.
It was the last three sentences that finally brought me wide awake:
"The Lab will be 11 on Jan.5 and will be retiring soon, Williams said. His health insurance will not cover the cost of a non-working dog, so he will be looking for a good home for him. If he had the money, Williams said, "I would definitely keep him."
Colleen Long and Kiley Armstrong, The Associated Press
What? This heroic dog loves his owner enough to face an oncoming train with him (and I don't believe any amount of training alone could make a dog do that). Yet as soon as he gets too old to keep working they will be separated?
Nuh - uh. Someone HAS to start a fundraiser for Cecil to keep Orlando. Hmmm, checking Google…
Now you are at the heartwarming part.
A gentleman named Mark Jacobsen started an account at Go Fund Me with a goal of $10,000. He's working with Guide Dogs for the Blind, the organization that raised and trained Orlando and matched him with Cecil. Here's the total as of 1:02 PM, Dec. 18 :
Isn't that amazing? It's Christmas for crying out loud. Americans have been maxing out their credit cards since Thanksgiving and yet… As for the surplus, Mr. Jacobsen's page indicates that it will almost certainly go to Guide Dogs for the Blind to continue their work of providing service dogs. They're still formalizing the details because the page hasn't even been up for a whole day yet!
Here's the link so you can see news and updates for yourself:
And here is a link to the update from Guiding Eyes for the Blind:
Cecil and Guiding Eyes Orlando
Finally, here is a link to a much more detailed report:
Yes. There is violence and hate in the United States. But today this story reminds me of the true America, the people I actually see around me. Americans are the best, most generous people on the planet and today I'm proud to be an American.