The Animal Hall of Fame is a way to recognize those animals that have made a difference in our community and who have strengthened the human-animal bond. Below are some of the recipients.
2010 Animal Hall of Fame Inductee:
Owners: Homer and Shar Pauley
A mild natured dog surprised her family one night as the neighbors were being held at gun point. The dog had barked ferociously, perhaps sensing “something” just wasn’t right that night.
“I imagined an onslaught of litigation, thinking she would catch and mangle my poor, sweet neighbor,” Shar Pauley confessed about her new foster pup, officially given the name Calamity Jane, as Shar liked the western sound of it.
Calamity Jane was found by a good samaritan along side a country road in Glen Rose. She had been shot in the leg and left for dead. Dr. Sue Hultman from Central Animal Hospital in Fort Worth made the decision that to save the dog, her leg would have to be amputated. After surgery, Shar just happened to be visiting the hospital with her own dog when she fell head over heels for Calamity Jane and her Cleopatra eyes.
Not long after, Shar was taking her dogs out for some fresh air one night; Calamity Jane went ballistic and started furiously barking. Within minutes, while Calamity Jane and the other two dogs were still barking, Shar heard a car door slam and tires squealing out of the neighbor’s driveway.
Just minutes later, Shar’s neighbor rushed over asking for help. They had just been held at gun point for the past hour by four men When they heard the vicious sounds of dogs barking, they were finally scared off.
As Shar reminisced about her rescued dog, she never would have thought, especially only having three legs and having been abandoned by her previous owners, that Calamity Jane would have the courage and ability to still be man’s best friend. Perhaps Calamity sensed the uneasiness next door at the neighbors and feared not just her life, but for the life of her new puppies as well.
Calamity Jane is a hero and we applaud her for her bravery and courage. Congratulations as our 2010 Animal Hall of Fame Award winner!
2009 Animal Hall of Fame Inductee:
Owners: Diane Greytak
With great enthusiasm, this year’s TCVMA Animal Hall of Fame Award winner is Gus Greytak. Gus was found wandering near Jason Little Road Animal Clinic with no microchip or collar. Efforts to find his owner were unsuccessful, and the clinic even contemplated sending him to the pound when Diane Greytak volunteered to adopt him.
Over the past 6 years, Gus has been an exemplary dog with many special talents. He has helped raise 4 puppies for Canine Companions for Independence by nudging the young pups along in their training. In addition, he is registered with Therapy Dogs International through which he visits hospitals, nursing homes and schools giving the elderly and infirm a chance to have the reassurance of soft, warm fur, and a friendly tail wag. He has a particularly calming affect on Alzheimer’s patients.
Perhaps most impressive is Gus’s weekly visit to a local public elementary school that serves students who have physical, mental and behavioral challenges. Gus began visiting the special education classrooms in the fall of 2007 and at first the children were inquisitive and a little hesitant. However, through Gus’s consistently attentive, loving and gentle temperament, he has broken down all barriers resulting in amazingly strong bonds with the students. Gus is the model of patience and tender love with children who have limited gross motor control. He never flinches or turns away when they accidentally hit or kick him, and is very tolerant of having his ears, fur, and tail pulled. The children remember him and greet him wildly every week when he returns. Even the autistic children will interact with him, whereas they normally acknowledge very little about their surroundings.
Gus has touched the lives of so many and is a well deserved Animal Hall of Fame Award Recipient.
2008 Animal Hall of Fame Inductee:
Owners: Vicki Carter & Mark Bober
Martini, a 6½ year old Whippet, has been a volunteer through Odyssey Healthcare (a hospice organization) since September 2007. Odyssey Healthcare has 5 nursing homes and Martini has made many special friends. “He is the apple of my eye” one Odyssey patient declares! Martini seems to be drawn to those that need his support. During his initial visit to a hospice facility, an Odyssey nurse was giving them a tour and introducing Martini to some of the patients. Martini happily walked into one patient’s room and the gentleman smiled. The Odyssey nurse was so shocked she was almost in tears as this was the first emotion that man had shown in the three months of her care.
During one visit to one of his favorite hospice patients, we found Gene in bed instead of up reading the newspaper and listening to the TV. Vicki, his owner, held Martini up so Gene could see and pet him. When Martini became to heavy for Vicki to continue holding, she gently placed Martini in bed beside Gene. Gene continued to pet him and then took a hold of his tags. He smiled and said, “I like his medals”. Martini was an angel and never moved a muscle. Gene passed away a couple of weeks after their visit.
Martini has many stories of love and care that he has shown to those in need of his special attention. Martini is a member of the local Dog Scout Troo119 p and has earned four merit badges. He has been featured in Dog World Magazine, theNational Dog Scouts of America Newsletter (regarding his therapy work) and theOdyssey Healthcare Volunteer News.
2007 Animal Hall of Fame Inductee:
Owners: Chris and Amy Cromer
On a cold day last February, Chris, an EMT, and the Newark Fire/Rescue were dispatched to Eagle Mountain Lake for a victim stranded in the mud on a 4- wheeler 500 feet from the bank. The mud was waist deep so rescuers could not get ropes to the victim without posing danger to themselves. At that moment, Chris thought of Suzie, his nine-year-old Labrador retriever and her training in obedience and hunting. With approval from the assistant fire chief, Chris returned home and brought Suzie back to the scene. They fastened a makeshift harness to her and gave her the command to take the wet rope to the victim. After she reached the victim, he hooked the rope to the 4-wheeler but as the rescuers pulled, the rope broke. Suzie made several more trips to the victim carrying more rope and supplies such as blankets, hot-packs and a cell phone. At last, the victim used the rope to pull a backboard to himself and the rescuers were then able to pull him to safety.
Suzie’s duties turned to the victim’s young toddler son on the shore who was becoming quite distressed with his father’s predicament and absence. Suzie sat on the ATV with the youngster and enjoyed his stroking as he was quickly comforted by her presence. Because of her efforts, the victim was brought to shore quickly, safely and easily. The best part for her was the new friends she made while playing extra games of fetch.
2006 Animal Hall of Fame Inductee:
Owners: Bob and Karen Deeds
Kinsey is a certified Type I-Advanced Disaster Dog with Texas-Task Force One of the Federal Emergency Management Agency working under the Office of Homeland Security. Of all the working detection K-9 certifications, the advanced disaster dog certification is at the top of the list in both talent and training. Kinsey is one of seven dogs trained at this certification level in Texas and one of 150 in the United States. She is trained in agility, directionals, obedience and how to alert her handler on trapped victims. Normally it takes two years to be advanced disaster dog certified, but Kinsey completed the requirements in just one year.
Her first deployment was to the World Trade Center shortly after September 11th, 2001, just months after finishing her certification. Since then, Kinsey has been on 8 federal and/or state deployments including the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City, Utah, Tropical Storm Erika and Hurricanes Ivan, Dennis, Katrina, Rita and Ernesto. Tarrant and Dallas Counties have also benefited from Kinsey’s training. She is Wilderness Certified with Search One Rescue Team. In the last few years, she has been deployed 25 times for Search Rescue One in the Dallas/Fort Worth and surrounding area.
Kinsey remains dedicated to her training. She maintains a hectic schedule with bi-monthly trips to Disaster City at Texas A&M University to train through rubble piles, prop buildings and a mock-up train wreckage site. She has demonstrated diligence, obedience and dedication in being calm and focused in the most horrific environments.
2005 Animal Hall of Fame Inductee:
Mrs. Butterworth, “Mrs. B”
Owners: Equest Therapeutic Horsemanship
Mrs. Butterworth has devoted her long life to serving others and making a huge impact on their lives. As a youngster “Mrs. B”, was trained as a pony hunter. Because of her quiet nature she quickly became a lesson horse. When therapeutic riding was added to the lesson program, due to her extraordinary patience level, Mrs. B became the mount of choice for those special riders. That was 22 years ago and she has been teaching scads of riders with special needs ever since, that is up until her formal retirement on May 7th, 2005.
Mrs. B is willing to devote every ounce of her sorrel, hay- bellied body to our riders. She is over-the-top on her giving level. She has taught more riders to take their first steps of independence then any other horse in the barn, past or present. She certainly possesses the patience and has given decades of her time. It seems that Mrs. B’s personal goal was to make each of her riders maximize their potential. She doesn’t care what her riders look like or how much they know, or don’t know. She was the strong shoulder they could always lean on and the forgiving spirit they could always learn on. Versatility was another one of Mrs. B’s superlatives. Sports riding of the walk, trot or canter nature, low jumping, hippotherapy, long-lining, working trail, showmanship at halter, basic dressage, and western pleasure riding were in her repertoire of skills. She’s a horse that has given multitudes of riders enough trunk stability to take their first walking steps, enough stimulation to riders to speak their first words or laugh their first laugh, enough confidence to “green” volunteers to pick up her hooves.
During Mrs. B’s tenure as a therapy horse, riders have been born, flourished and become adults. Some riders have died. With the passage of each decade Mrs. B continued to perform her job flawlessly with grace, kindness and courage, changing numerous people’s lives for the better and sending them down a better path.
2004 Animal Hall of Fame Inductee:
Owners: Gene & Carol Autry
As an 8 month old pup, Loco was taken from his backyard in Dallas . When he was found on the front doorstep four days later, both eyes had been gouged such that their removal was necessary. Loco’s owners, Greg and Carol Autry, were horrified to learn that such cruelty was only a misdemeanor, meaning that if the assailant was apprehended, punishment could consist of only a fine and a small possibility of county jail time.
This tragedy launched the Autry’s into action. With the help of Representative Manny Najera and Senator David Cain, House Bill 653, The Animal Felony Cruelty Bill, was signed into law June 6, 2001 by Governor Rick Perry and Loco. Now animal cruelty is classified as a felony and subject to a penalty of up to two years in a state jail and a $10,000 fine. It also calls for mandatory counseling of those 17 or younger who commit acts of animal cruelty, since studies have shown those who abuse animals are more likely to commit future violent acts against people.
Loco has paid the ultimate price to bring heightened public awareness and hardened judicial consequences to animal cruelty.
2003 Animal Hall of Fame Inductee:
Owner: Renee Corbitt, DDS
Bailey is the Tarrant County Veterinary Medical Association 2003 inductee into the Animal Hall of Fame. When Dr. Renee Corbitt found her 5 years ago, she had been abandoned and badly abused. Who could have foreseen that 5 years later she would be responsible for saving someone’s life?
Bailey and Dr. Corbitt had not followed their typical routine that day and arrived home much later than usual. As Dr. Corbitt tried to hurry Bailey into the house and out of the bitterly cold wind chill, Bailey pulled Dr. Corbitt away from their front door and refused to go inside. Bailey led her across the street to the front porch of their neighbor, Mrs. Janie Payne. She had fallen onto her porch and was bleeding and in visible distress. Later, they would learn that she had broken her neck in the fall. Bailey had to be forced into her house; she did not want to leave Mrs. Payne. To survive Mrs. Payne needed immediate medical attention. She had been on her porch for about 20 minutes. Mrs. Payne continues on her road to recovery everyday.
Bailey was a “throw away” dog, but to Dr. Corbitt and Mrs. Payne her value is immeasurable. There are so many animals that are given up on daily and with love, most of them will give back more than they ever get from their human companions.
2002 Animal Hall of Fame Inductee:
Pepe – Type II Disaster Dog, Search One Rescue Team
Owner and Handler: Patrick Gilliland
Pepe, a Border Collie, and Pat Gilliland came together in 1993 when Pepe was only 10 weeks old. Pepe’s breeder gave him to Pat free of charge after he found out that he would be trained as a search dog. They began training the next day.
Pepe became deployable as an air scent dog when he was 13 months old. He was then trained and deployed as a cadaver search dog. Members of the team that Pat and Pepe were on, Search One Rescue, jokingly said that Pat need only to arrive, show Pepe a map of the search area, and Pat could sit back and drink coffee while Pepe methodically searched the area. Pat and Pepe attended numerous disaster training seminars and in September of 1997 were accepted on the Texas Task Force. Pepe became the first FEMA certified disaster dog on Texas Task Force One in August 1998. Then in May of 2001, Texas Task Force One was accepted into the FEMA Urban Search and Rescue system. Pepe has participated in over 150 searches with his local team. Of course, none of them were more memorable than the World TradeCenter . Pepe and Pat served from September 16th through September 26th, 2001 at the WTC site. The dogs that served there did not find any live victims. However, they provided comfort and peace to many of the rescuers. The men and women of the Search One Rescue Team are not paid for their service. In fact, they volunteer their weekends and free time, sometimes over 20 hours per week, to be prepared to serve in times of crisis and disaster. After tirelessly serving fellow Texans and the Country since 1993, Pat and Pepe officially retired but not before receiving some outstanding awards. Pepe, along with all dogs at Ground Zero and the Pentagon, was awarded the PDSA Dicken Medal for animal gallantry. He also received an honorable mention for the AKC ’s Award for Canine Excellence (ACE).
Pepe’s endurance, courage, and loyalty in addition to his ability to engender peace and give comfort, exemplify why many of us have chosen to dedicate our lives to the welfare of animals. Pepe’s life is proof of the bond between man and animal. A bond that cannot be explained with words but with the tears, smiles, and laughter of those Pepe has touched.