“I am a disabled Veteran due to an injury in 2013, resulting in surgery, a debilitating stroke, balance, cognitive and PTSD issues. In my mind, being so physically handicapped and having lost my ability to continue working in my field to support myself faced a seemingly hopeless future. I was emotionally incapable of thinking coherently, barely able to take care of myself, having been homeless, indigent and had all but given up with a plan to end my life.
I went through a period of homelessness ultimately finding assistance (medical & housing) through the Veterans administration, and meeting Dr. Morris in 2014 who was instrumental in helping Wego and me become a team. Always a dog lover, I was introduced to Vets to Vets United, Inc.(VTVUI), a non-profit organization who matches rescue dogs with Veterans in need and empowers us to train our own service dog(s). Wego had been adopted from a shelter in NC. When Wego and I were introduced, it was an instant bond. With the hands on assistance of the Founder/Director Dr. Terry Morris, We trained, struggled, and worked becoming inseparable partners living for each other.
With the financial assistance of VTV, I adopted Wego and committed to his care and training for his lifetime. After 18 months Wego is a registered Service Dog, I am training other Veterans (part of the agreement with VTV is to give back through volunteerism), and we are a registered active Pet Partners therapy team regularly touching lives at a local senior center as well as in the Durham VA Regional medical center.
Thanks to Wego, and Vets to Vets United I found the will to fight, the desire to live, and joy in reaching out to others through therapy work and working with other veterans and their rescue dogs to hopefully, improve their lives so they can find the joy of life and living.” – Paul
To learn more about Vets to Vets United, click HERE.