Thursday, April 24, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

The Internet helps 61-year-old blind man keep hero guide dog

Cecil Williams is a 61-year-old blind man who had a close call with death, this week, when he lost consciousness on a New York City subway platform and fell onto the tracks. His heroic guide dog, Orlando, "barked frantically and tried to stop Williams from tumbling off the platform."

The Internet helps 61-year-old blind man keep hero guide dog

AP

Cecil Williams is a 61-year-old blind man who had a close call with death, this week, when he lost consciousness on a New York City subway platform and fell onto the tracks. His heroic guide dog, Orlando, "barked frantically and tried to stop Williams from tumbling off the platform."

When Williams eventually did fall onto the tracks, Orlando leaped down their with his owner and tried to get Williams to move, but wouldn't leave his owner's side as the train headed right for them.

"I lost consciousness and he was trying to pull me back," an emotional Williams said during a news conference from the New York hospital where he was recovering. "But when you have a dog in a harness, I guess I fell over and he fell over with me. When we fell over, he stayed down there with me. And he was licking my face, but he was there for me." 

Both were struck but only received minor injuries, and Williams credits Orlando for saving his life.

Williams was able to grab a hold of Orlando and the duo ducked down between the tracks, allowing the train to move over them, narrowly escaping death.

This incredible story would have had a depressing ending, if not for the Internet, though. Orlando is about turn 11, which is retirement age for guide dogs. Williams was going to have to give the heroic pup up for adoption because his insurance wouldn't cover the needs for the aging dog past the first of the year.

So, someone started a viral fundraiser on the Internets and now Williams is armed with more than $65,000 to help him keep and care for the dog that saved his live.

This is the part when you have your morning cry. [h/t Today]

Mike Bertha Philly.com
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