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Rick with Storm



Rick in wheelchair







Mobility Scooter




Quiet Angels




My husband



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 Rick has overcome much hardship and adversity in his life 

On Easter Sunday, 1994 he tore his vertebral artery cutting off the blood to his brain causing him to have a VERY severe brain injury that left his entire right side permanently impaired. On a scale of 1-10 we were told, “He was an eleven, nearly died, was lucky to be alive, would never be the same and that our dog Capone probably saved his life!

Upon losing his ability walk and to fluently communicate he became reclusive. Our so called friends avoided us like the plague. (It seemed that no-one we knew wanted to be associated with us since his injury) It wasn't always pretty! He missed being around others, took it very hard and sank into deep denial and depression. He began taking antidepressants and drinking heavily. He would sit in a stupor wallowing in pride and self pity for hours.

I don't judge him too harshly! He was severely injured, faced death, experienced helplessness, loneliness, anxiety, frustration, confined to a house / wheelchair, lost everything that he had worked for including respect, independence, hopes and dreams, had his drivers license taken away, and his life revolved around doctors, therapists, lawyers and insurance companies.  He depended on me and his disability income.

 I truly believe that Rick has changed for the better! 

Many people would have just given up. But Rick isn't wired that way! With the help of myself, his doctors/therapists, his dogs and the Lord it took years, but he worked lo-o-ong and hard to recover enough to regain a place as a useful member of society!

To look at him, you'd think that he was fine.  However, He still has numerous problems: He walks with a cane, tires easily, needs his tricycle, mobility scooter or car to get around. (He cannot sit or stand for any length of time without experiencing a considerable amount of pain.)

Rick isn't one to just lay around. Immediately after reaching retirement age, being released from disability, began receiving social security, and allowed to seek employment he began looking for a way to help out. (I keep telling him that we'll be okay, but he wants to help)

 Lesson Learned 

July 27, 2016 - With help from the Illinois Department of Rehabilitation and SPARC he got a job as a p/t Greeter at Walmart to earn income while making new friends and rekindle friendships that he never could by sitting at home. (Sooner or later, just about everyone in our vicinity walks through those doors.) 

February 2, 2017Due to age, pain from sitting / standing for extended periods, and medications Rick resigned from Walmart.  He did his best to hang on one day at a time but it wasn't working out. (I still can't believe that he lasted that long.)  The more he worked, the worse he hurt. (It's difficult to continually appear cheerful when you hurt or are spaced out on pain medication)

It was shortly after leaving Walmart that we were told that he should try dog sitting at home since he loved dogs and wanted another one as his own.  Besides, he was doing it for family, friends and neighbors for nothing anyway.  We placed ads in local classifieds only to get less than desirable results. We only received a limited number of requests.  Of the few that we did receive we actually felt threatened and watched dogs only to be stiffed.  We only had one favorable outcome!  We decided that it wasn't worth the risk!


We had given up when out of pure chance we heard about Rover.  After filling out the application and meeting the requirements, we immediately began to get booking requests.  Everyone is screened and billed before they are given our personal info.  Rick took to it like a duck takes to water.   

Not bad for a man that was told by his doctor, "Odds are that you will NEVER get better!!!"

Now he's back to doing the things that he loves, milling around the house, feeding the birds and the squirrels, sitting in the back yard watching dogs, birds, butterflies... only now he's being paid for it!!!  For exercise he rides his tricycle around doing drop-in-visits and talking the few long time neighbors he has left. 

Rick has a great attitude and truly appreciates life! However he misses family, friends, previous co-workers and pets that have came and gone through the years. Especially Capone & Jake.  

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He enjoys the company as well as meeting the owners! 

We earn extra cash doing something fun and easy.  Maybe you could too.  If you are interested click here to learn more.

Love dogs?  Get paid to play with them!

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