CFN – In 1927, a young man who was blind , Morris Frank, read a story about dogs being trained as guide dogs for blinded WW1 veterans.
According to the Seeing eye Organization website, he wrote to the author of the article asking for help because he was so frustrated with his mobility issues. The letter reached Dorothy Harrison Eustis, who at the time, was training German Shepherds in Switzerland to become Guide Dogs. She agreed to help him and he agreed to return home to the States and help the organization which was forming, to spread this wonderful good news of Guide Dogs.
After having completed his training in 1928 in Switzerland, Frank returned to New York City with his Guide Dog ‘Buddy, a female German Shepherd, to show the dog’s ability to lead a blind person safely. He proved that a blind man with his Guide could lead a normal life. The Seeing Eye , as the web site says, was born.
I was happily surprised to learn that the Seeing eye Organization is also in Canada. I received a note from their office in Toronto. I went on their web site and was deighted to see some of their gorgeous puppies and info about their organization. Guide Dogs are available for anyone 16-75 years of age who meets the organizations eligibility requirements. Please go to their website for more information and to read about this wonderful organization.
I first heard about the Seeing Eye organization when I read a book some years ago titled, ‘Love Leads the Way’. It was originally published as the “First Lady of the Seeing Eye’. It is the story of Morris Frank and his struggles with his blindness which occured after a boxing match accident . He also had to accept his new canine companion and guide.
As well, it tells how the Seeing Eye Organization was formed and its struggles to gain legislative and public acceptance of the Guide dog. Later, I saw the movie made by Walt Disney Studios starring Timothy Buttons, Eva Marie Saint and appearances by the wonderful Ralph Bellamy, Ernest Borgnine and Patricia Neal and still have my copy . It is an inspiring movie which tugs at the heart strings but also shows what can be accomplished with determination and courage.
Dogs are available in Canada now through the Seeing Eye Organization as well as our wonderful Canadian Guide Dogs .The Mira Foundation in Montreal offers companion dogs for different maladies as well as Guide dogs also. Go to their web sites for more information on these wonderful dogs.
People ask me where I got Tiger, my cat, big big baby. When my female cat died, after awhile, I went to the SPCA to get a short haired little female I could easily carry. I had had two long haired Main Coone cat types and although they were beautiful. the fur was always a big brushing job or it was all over the house. As I was looking at the poor little darling female cats in their cages, a male cat in a bottem cage kept poking his paw out and meowing at me.
The attendant said that she thought he had picked me out. I didn’t want a great big long haired male. He kept it up so she took him out of his cage and put him in my arms. He snuggled up and purred and purred. He was five years old and had been in the shelter for quite awhile. I guess that is why I looked good to him. It was love at first sight, I’m afraid. However, it wasn’t really what I wanted to do, so I decided to go home and think about it. But all I could think about was Tiger. So, I went back the next day. I asked the staff if Tiger was still available. She said, “He’s waiting for you”. I took him home. That was over six years ago. He’s put on a few pounds since..so have I…lol
I was so sad to see that there would be no transportation for anyone on Christmas Day. Someone said to me that it was not an essential service. Well, I bet if you are disabled or can’t afford a cab to get somewhere, it is pretty essential to them. And the weather was so awful for anyone who had to walk anywhere. I wonder how these decisions are made and why??..especially at a very big holiday like Christmas .I know several people in electric wheelchairs who must have had to stay home. It is heartbreaking especially with turkey dinners being served at the Agora Center, the Agape Center and Trinity Anglican Church. Surely we can do better than that .
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I was thinking about Hanukkah one day when I was getting my candles ready to light my menorah on Dec. 17th., the first day of Hanukkah. I am not Jewish but I love the Festival of Lights and I love my menorah. As I was lighting the menorah, all of a sudden a Jewish song, Hava Nagila ( Let us rejoice and be glad) which I had learned in Girl Guides as a teenager, came into my head. I remembered every word of it and even the dance we had learned which was probably the Hora. What prompted that, I wondered, when I can hardly remember all of the English songs we learned .I am beginning to think the aging brain is very strange . Well, mine is anyway. I have not heard ‘Hava Nagila in many many moons…too many to even guess and yet, every word was there for me to recite. I then realized I could also remember the words to a French song we had also learned, ‘Quand Le Soleil Dit Bonjour Aux Montagne’ but not all the words to an English song, ‘Land of the Silver Birch’. We used to sing that song paddling our canoes up in Doe Lake. I would really like to know why the brain has recorded the Jewish and French song so well in my brain and not the English ones. Someone said they thought it was because I had to memorize a different language. Could be .Any ideas??
From the newsletter that I receive from Robert and Sara Genn, artists:
Here are the four stages of life:
1) You believe in Santa Claus
2) You don’t believe in Santa Claus
3) You are Santa Claus
4) You look like Santa Claus
Happy New Year, Dawn
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