For "Mammal Monday:"
We all know the Poem of The Rainbow Bridge:
This is the Rescuer's Rainbow Bridge:
"Unlike most days at Rainbow Bridge, this day dawned cold and gray, damp as a swamp and as dismal as could be imagined. All of the recent arrivals had no idea what to think, as they had never experienced a day like this before.
But the animals who had been waiting for their beloved people knew exactly what was going on and started to gather at the pathway leading to The Bridge to watch.
It wasn't long before an elderly animal came into view, head hung low and tail dragging. The other animals, the ones who had been there for a while, knew what his story was right away, for they had seen this happen far too often.
He approached slowly, obviously in great emotional pain, but with no sign of injury or illness. Unlike all of the other animals waiting at The Bridge, this animal had not been restored to youth and made healthy and vigorous again.
As he walked toward The Bridge, he watched all of the other animals watching him. He knew he was out of place here and the sooner he could cross over, the happier he would be. But, alas, as he approached The Bridge, his way was barred by the appearance of an Angel who apologized, but told him that he would not be able to pass. Only those animals who were with their people could pass over Rainbow Bridge.
With no place else to turn to, the elderly animal turned towards the fields before The Bridge and saw a group of other animals like himself, also elderly and infirm. They weren't playing, but rather simply lying on the green grass, forlornly staring out at the pathway leading to The Bridge. And so, he took his place among them, watching the pathway and waiting.
One of the newest arrivals at The Bridge didn't understand what he had just witnessed and asked one of the animals that had been there for awhile to explain it to him.
"You see, that poor animal was a rescue. He was turned in to rescue just as you see him now, an older animal with his fur graying and his eyes clouding. He never made it out of rescue and passed on with only the love of his rescuer to comfort him as he left his earthly existence. Because he had no family to give his love to, he has no one to escort him across The Bridge."
The first animal thought about this for a minute and then asked, "So what will happen now?" As he was about to receive his answer, the clouds suddenly parted and the gloom lifted. Approaching The Bridge could be seen a single person, and among the older animals, a whole group was suddenly bathed in a golden light and they were all young and healthy again, just as they were in the prime of life.
"Watch, and see," said the second animal. A second group of animals from those waiting came to the pathway and bowed low as the person neared. At each bowed head, the person offered a pat on the head or a scratch behind the ears. The newly restored animals fell into line and followed her towards The Bridge. They all crossed The Bridge together.
"That was a rescuer. The animals you saw bowing in respect were those who found new homes because of her work. They will cross when their new families arrive.
Those you saw restored were those who never found homes. When a rescuer arrives, they are allowed to perform one, final act of rescue. They are allowed to escort those poor animals that they couldn't place on earth across The Rainbow Bridge."
"I think I like rescuers", said the first animal.
"So does GOD", was the reply."
But there are other rescuers:
The 9/11 rescue dogs: Portraits of the last surviving animals who scoured Ground Zero one decade on.
"During the chaos of the 9/11 attacks, where almost 3,000 people died, nearly 100 loyal search-and-rescue dogs and their brave owners scoured Ground Zero for survivors.
Now, ten years on, just 12 of these heroic canines survive, and they have been commemorated in a touching series of portraits entitled 'Retrieved'.
The dogs worked tirelessly to search for anyone trapped alive in the rubble, along with countless emergency service workers and members of the public.
Moxie, 13, from Winthrop, Massachusetts, arrived with her handler, Mark Aliberti, at the World Trade Center on the evening of September 11 and searched the site for eight days
Tara, 16, from Ipswich, Massachusetts, arrived at the World Trade Center on the night of the 11th. The dog and her handler Lee Prentiss were there for eight days.
Kaiser, 12, pictured at home in Indianapolis, Indiana, was deployed to the World Trade Center on September 11 and searched tirelessly for people in the rubble.
Travelling across nine states in the U.S. from Texas to Maryland, Dutch photographer Charlotte Dumas, 34, captured the remaining dogs in their twilight years in their homes where they still live with their handlers, a full decade on from 9/11.
Their stories have now been compiled in a book, called Retrieved, which was published on the tenth anniversary of the attacks.
Noted for her touching portraits of animals, especially dogs, Charlotte wanted 'Retrieved' to mark not only the anniversary of the September 2001 attacks, but also as recognition for some of the first responders and their dogs. Travelling across nine states in the U.S. from Texas to Maryland, Dutch photographer Charlotte Dumas, 34, captured the remaining dogs in their twilight years in their homes where they still live with their handlers, a full decade on from 9/11.
'I felt this was a turning point, especially for the dogs, who although are not forgotten, are not as prominent as the human stories involved,' explained Charlotte. 'They speak to us as a different species and animals are greatly important for our sense of empathy and to put things into perspective.'
Bretagne and his owner Denise Corliss from Cypress, Texas, arrived at the site in New York on September 17, remaining there for ten days. Bretagne takes a break from work at the 9/11 site with his handler Denise. It was moving talking to Denise Corliss. She told me a touching story of one fireman who was there in the rubble, and how taken he was with Bretagne who comforted him as he sat down to catch his breath. Years later at a Remembrance Ceremony, the same fireman recognized Bretagne and her handler and they had a touching reunion. It developed that even though the dogs couldn't find people still alive, they could provide comfort for the brave firemen and rescue workers of the emergency services.'
Guinness, 15, from Highland, California, started work at the site with Sheila McKee on the morning of September 13 and was deployed at the site for 11 days
Merlyn and his handler Matt Claussen were deployed to Ground Zero on September 24, working the night shift for five days
Most of the search and rescue dogs are Labradors or Golden Retrievers and Charlotte feels that the title works across many aspects of the story.
'I found the dogs, I retrieved them, they were there to retrieve the victims, it is nicely rounded,' explained Charlotte whose work is being exhibited at the Julie Saul Gallery NYC opening on September 8, in time for the anniversary.
After working on a project about police canines and other working dogs, she was inspired to concentrate on the animals that played such a huge part in seeking survivors.
Contacting the NYPD, the New York Fire Department and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Charlotte discovered that out of the nearly 100 dogs among the first responders deployed by FEMA, there were in fact only 15 still alive last year.
Red, 11, from Annapolis, Maryland, went with Heather Roche to the Pentagon from September 16 until the 27 as part of the Bay Area Recovery Canines
Abigail, left, was deployed on the evening of September 17, searching for 10 days while Tuff arrived in New York at 11:00 pm on the day of attack to start working early the next day.
Unknown dogs lie among the rubble at Ground Zero, just two of nearly 100 search and rescue animals who helped to search for survivors
'They were there for the first few weeks, they were trained to find people alive, although that is ultimately not what happened,' said Charlotte. 'I traveled across the United States to meet with the owners and portray the dogs. They are all retired and I spent time with each of their handlers learning about their experiences.'
Handler Julie Noyes and Hoke were deployed to the World Trade Center from their home in Denver on September 24 and searched for five days
Searching for survivors: The dogs worked around the clock in the vain hope of finding anyone still alive at the World Trade Center site
'Wishing to tell the other side of heroism from 9/11, each of Charlotte's encounters with dogs such as Gabriel and Orion and Scout stayed with her. 'The dogs are now old and they will soon pass away. Even during the time it has taken since my first work on the 'Retrieved' portraits to now, three of the final 15 have died,' said Charlotte. 'These portraits are about how time passes, and how these dogs and their portraits are offering us a way to deal with the things that happened as well as relying on them for comfort.' Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2033628/Surviving-9-11-rescue-dogs-scoured-Ground-Zero-bodies-commemorated-decade-difficult-mission.html#ixzz1YhYJau18
"Being a veterinarian, I had been called to examine a ten-year-old Irish Wolfhound named Belker. The dog's owners, Ron, his wife Lisa, and their little boy Shane, were all very attached to Belker, and they were hoping for a miracle.
I examined Belker and found he was dying of cancer. I told the family we couldn't do anything for Belker, and offered to perform the euthanasia procedure for the old dog in their home. As we made arrangements, Ron and Lisa told me they thought it would be good for six-year-old Shane to observe the procedure. They felt as though Shane might learn something from the experience.
The next day, I felt the familiar catch in my throat as Belker's family surrounded him. Shane seemed so calm, petting the old dog for the last time, that I wondered if he understood what was going on. Within a few minutes, Belker slipped peacefully away.
The little boy seemed to accept Belker's transition without any difficulty or confusion. We sat together for a while after Belker's Death, wondering aloud about the sad fact that animal lives are shorter than human lives. Shane, who had been listening quietly, piped up, 'I know why.'
Startled, we all turned to him. What came out of his mouth next stunned me. I'd never heard a more comforting explanation.
He said, 'People are born so that they can learn how to live a good Life -- like loving everybody all the time and being nice, right?' The Six-year-old continued, 'Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don't have to stay as long.' "
Dogs Don't Have Souls, Do They?
"I remember bringing you home. You were so small and cuddly with your tiny paws and soft fur. You bounced around the room with eyes flashing and ears flopping. Once in a while, you'd let out a little yelp just to let me know this was your territory. Making a mess of the house and chewing on everything in sight became a passion, and when I scolded you, you just put your head down and looked up at me with those innocent eyes, as if to say, "I'm sorry, but I'll do it again as soon as you're not watching."
As you got older, you protected me by looking out the window and barking at everyone who walked by. When I had a tough day at work, you would be waiting for me with your tail wagging just to say, "Welcome home. I missed you. "You never had a bad day, and I could always count on you to be there for me.
When I sat down to read the paper and watch TV, you would hop on my lap, looking for attention. You never asked for anything more than for me to pat your head so you could go to sleep with your head over my leg.
As you got older, you moved around more slowly. Then, one day, old age finally took its toll, and you couldn't stand on those wobbly legs anymore. I knelt down and patted you lying there, trying to make you young again. You just looked up at me as if to say you were old and tired and that after all these years of not asking for anything, you had to ask me for one last favor.
With tears in my eyes, I drove you one last time to the vet. One last time, you were lying next to me. For some strange reason, you were able to stand up in the animal hospital, perhaps it was your sense of pride.
As the vet led you away, you stopped for an instant, turned your head and looked at me as if to say, "Thank you for taking care of me.” I thought, "No, thank you for taking care of me." " By Chuck Wells of Palmyra, N.Y.
I must change the subject, as I have tears in my eyes, thinking of my two extra special dogs, Bunnie and Levi!
On This Day:
Supreme Court defends women's voting rights, Feb 27, 1922:
"In Washington, D.C., the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, providing for female suffrage, is unanimously declared constitutional by the eight members of the U.S. Supreme Court. The 19th Amendment, which stated that "the right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any State on account of sex," was the product of over seven decades of meetings, petitions, and protests by women suffragists and their supporters.
In 1916, the Democratic and Republican parties endorsed female enfranchisement, and on June 4, 1919, the 19th Amendment was passed by Congress and sent to the states for ratification. On August 18, 1920, Tennessee became the 36th state to ratify the amendment, achieving the required three-fourths majority of state ratification, and on August 26 the 19th Amendment officially took effect."
AIM takes Wounded Knee, Feb 27, 1973:
"Angered over a long history of violated treaties, mistreatment, and discrimination, 200 members of the American Indian Movement (AIM) occupy the tiny hamlet of Wounded Knee, South Dakota."
After Jay and I took Misty and Maddie for their walk, we came here and tackled the big table in the workshop. Anything that needed something done to it, had been piled on it. Some of those things were cleaned and put away, and some we put in the already stuffed van, for donating. Now we can actually see the table, so Ray will be able to see exactly what has to be done.
It was a little too windy to burn, and a chilly, but sunny day.