Hi guys, thank you for visiting Gizmo’s Gift! I am so excited to introduce myself, and our BOD members to you.
I’m a Yankee with Southern blood who was the first of my generation to join the military. My great-grandfather served
in the Army during World War I. Both of my grandfathers served in World War II. My maternal grandfather served in
the Army Air Corp and was a Prisoner of War in Stalag XVII(17)-B for 13 months, and my uncle served in the Army
and was stationed in Germany during the Cold War.
I joined the United States Army on May 18, 2001, and served as a veterinary technician for almost 5 years before being
medically discharged. While on active duty as a veterinary technician I saw first hand the wonderful treatment our Military
Working Dogs received. I also learned when their service is terminated, which is always for medical reasons, the country
no longer has any responsibility for these heroes because they were then considered excess equipment.
A few years ago I was given an assignment in college to write about something near and dear to me. I wrote about the
financial burden on families who adopt retired Military Working Dogs. My professor, Jennifer Riske, encouraged me
to take the essay to Congress. With help from many, to include a Gold Star Mom, a Vietnam Dog Handler, and my
friends and family, I was able to get bi-partisan, bicameral support for the Canine Members of the Armed Forces Act.
It is because of the legislation that Gizmo’s Gift came to be. Gizmo’s Gift was formed to help with expenses
incurred after adopting a retired Military Working Dog. In 2005 I had the honor and privilege of adopting Gizmo A085
when he was retired due to kidney failure. Gizmo was also a Military Working Dog whom I treated and medically cared
for while we were both on active duty. Gizmo’s Gift is named in honor of Gizmo, who passed away in 2006.