Timmy on beech

Timmy A special Kind of Love 1999-2012

It is with a heavy heart that we announce the passing of Timmy. Our best friend and my partner.

Timmy passed in the earlier hours of January 12th. He was not ill and did not suffer. He crawled up along side us and went to sleep peacefully. 

We will post more about Timmy soon, but we as that you visit his Facebook page and please feel free to post and comments or stories you may have about Timmy.

He Facebook page Timmy A special kind of love

Timmy would have been 13 on April 15. He enjoyed life and made a difference for many!


Timmy’s Last Will and Testament

By Fred Redslob past PA District Governor, Kiwanis International 

Cinderella, you, Neil, and Vonnie  have crossed the bridge with me one last time and I stayed on the other side.  We have had great times together at the Young’s Funny Farm. 

As you know I’ve spent quite a few years with these Kiwanian-types.  They serve not only because ‘He’ has called them to serve but also, they love it!  Now, it is your turn to carry on as a Service Dog and there can be no higher calling.

 You get to travel:

I have been to three Kiwanis International Conventions.

I have made more Kiwanis District affairs than I can count on my four paws.

What a great ‘family’ these Kiwanians make!

You get to make people smile:

There is nothing sadder than a human tragedy yet your presence can help humans forget, even if for just a few moments.

People will laugh as you chase the red laser beam across the carpet at Kiwanis functions.

You ‘sense’ that hidden and unspoken hurt that only humans hold onto and fail to divulge.  However, you have the capacity to bring that person out of their shell.

Carry on ‘sister’; the load isn’t heavy; but, it’s fun and rewarding!

Your ‘brother’ ….until we meet again at the bridge.




Home > Timmy's Page

It all started with Timmy
A Special Kind of Love

First a little education: Timmy is a mixed breed (mutt) of Labrador-Springer-Basset mix. He was the runt of the litter that was being give away at the Dewart Horse Auction by Allenwood PA.

We got Timmy when he was about 6 weeks old. His birthday is April 15, 1999. We got Timmy as a pet, but after about 6 months of having Timmy I started to notice that I was no longer having to pull over for naps (due to my Narcolepsy) while driving. Once I realized that Timmy had a special talent I started to study the matter. 

Timmy has enabled me to once again become independent and more importantly changed from being a pet to becoming a "service dog" which has the same legal access as a blind persons "guide dog" under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).  

The ADA with regards to service animals supersedes all state, county, local laws and health 
department regulations that ban animals from public places. While learning about service animals, I also began to hear about "therapy dogs". Because of Timmy's outgoing nature, we had him tested In February of 2001. Timmy was certified as a Therapy Dog. 

Vonnie also is a Therapy Dog handler. Therapy dogs have no legal rights when it comes to public access which is why certification is so important to hospitals and other institutions in knowing that the dogs have met standards and are covered by insurance.

A service dog is not a therapy dog nor is a therapy dog a service dog. This makes Timmy an unusual dog as he is both. 

While Timmy had started working area nursing homes, we quickly moved into working mental health facilities duw=e to my time as a member of the board of the mental health association and prior experience with crisis intervention. We support NAMI whenever we have a chance and our work just grew.

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After the September 11, 2001 attacks, I volunteered to work in New York City, having involvement with officers of the Port Authority Police during training missions when I lived in Hillsdale, NJ. I also had worked in NYC and was often in the World Trade Towers.

When the call finally came, we were assigned with about 30 other dogs to work the Family Assistance Center (FAC) aka Pier 94.

One day while working we were befriended by a pair of NYPD officers who took us over to Pier 92, the command center. We were asked some questions and issued id cards, which until that time, we needed to be on a daily list to enter the FAC area.

Next thing we knew, we were driving downtown past the road blocks to the Ground Zero site. We will not go into details, but people who are not from the NYC area, and we were from Pennsylvania, should know the site was still smoldering into at least late December, early January.

We worked mainly around the pit and the respice centers, by choice to not interfere with the on going recovery.

There were dogs, heroic dogs, working Ground Zero from early on, with a PAPD police dog, Sirus, giving his life on 9/11.

Sirius and his handler, PAPD Officer David Lim, searched hundreds of trucks and vehicles for explosives each day at the World Trade Center. On the morning of September 11, Lim and Sirius were at the Port Authority police station in the basement of the North Tower, when Lim heard an explosion caused by one of the hijacked planes crashing into the building.

Lim left Sirius in his basement cage for safety, but while he escorted civilians down the fire stairs, the second plane crashed into the South Tower. Lim and the civilians with him were eventually evacuated, and Lim then tried to make his way back down to the basement police station to rescue Sirius. Other rescuers stopped him because the area was too dangerous to enter, and Sirius became another victim of the terrorist attack.

Timmy was the only therapy dog the NYPD gave credentials to and his job was so simple and yet complicated. Timmy was there to share his love and to provide comfort to the emergency service workers, construction and site workers and the wonderful teams from the Salvation Army, Red Cross and other disaster relief agencies.

We made the point to visit every police precinct that lost an officer, visited as many fire houses as we could and visited with the students of the Science Skills High School in Brooklyn, after seeing an e-mail from a teacher.

We still, to this day, still occasionally have someone approach us, calling Timmy by name, remembering us from our work in NYC.

Cinderella, who has taken over Timmy's service dog duties, is part of the Red Cross Disaster team with me and she has a set of Timmy's booties from Ground Zero that she can wear at a scene.


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