It is always special when we talk about hugging the golden retriever.
The event recently took place when two Janesville residents witnessed the effects firsthand in Surfside, Florida. A dog named Mary comforted people in pain over the collapse of a high-rise condominium that resulted in killing 98 people.
Dianne and Tom Moore are among 11 handlers from St. Paul’s Lutheran Church trained to take the dog ‘Mary’ to the places where tragedies happen. The process happens through a national program run by Lutheran Church Charities.
Mary is known to comfort people since 2018. The first time it happened was at the site of a child’s drowning on the Rock River, massive chemical plant fire in Roscoe, Illinois, the Molson-Coors shooting in Milwaukee in February, mass shooting nearby Carthage College, and the recent unexpected death of a Darien-Delavan high school student. Apart from this, Mary also goes to nursing homes, schools, and Rock County Jail.
The team of dogs goes where they are invited. The invitation to Surfside came from a Lutheran pastor in nearby North Miami.
The dog handlers also bring a wooden heart that contains Bible verses mounted on a white cross. For Surfside, the cross became a post, so as not to offend people of different faiths or no faith.
Volunteers made heart posts for everyone who died in the collapse – all 98 of them.
Tom, Dianne, and Mary greeted the rescue workers each day as they ended their 12-hour shifts. They comforted anyone they find in the area that includes the traffic-control officers, who were under a lot of stress.
Source: Beloit Daily News