A humbling experience

Published 3:23 pm Friday, July 23, 2010

This past Friday, I was scheduled at the Foothills Humane Society.&bsp; The goal of the morning shift is to complete all the many chores for the animals and be prepared to open to the public by 11 a.m.&bsp; I often stay later if theres a special animal Im looking into or if Im meeting someone to show an animal they may be interested in.&bsp; Sometimes Im met at the door and Im all too happy to spend some time with new people I meet. &bsp;

On this day, I had a pretty busy schedule beginning with a trip to Landrum vet to see sweet Bowser from Good things happen.&bsp; After browsing through the paperwork on a few dogs that held my interest, I was set to leave when I was greeted by a nice lady and her young teenaged daughter. &bsp;

Are you Mr. Rizzo? she asked.&bsp; I am, I replied, are you here to look at a special animal?&bsp; Were just looking and visiting, we read all your articles.&bsp; Thank you, I again replied, would you like me to show you around and tell you about as many animals as I can?&bsp; That would be wonderful, she answered as her daughter stood quietly by, never taking her eyes off me with a quiet smile on her face.&bsp; This is my daughter Mackenzie, she saves every one of your stories and puts them up on her wall. She intends to be a veterinarian largely because of you.&bsp; I smiled and thanked them again, marveling at the thought of walls plastered with Special Cases.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

I gave them the perfunctory tour, singling out certain animals and telling their stories.&bsp; My mind was elsewhere and I didnt give the young lady who humbled me with her patronage nearly enough attention as I should have, so here it goes, sweet Mackenzie.

First of all, I was very moved by your devotion to my articles and my work with the animals.&bsp; I was also quite pleased that Ive reached someone as young as yourself.&bsp; Slowly but surely, things are improving for the animals, but there is still a long way to go. My generation and those before me have made many mistakes regarding the welfare of these creatures God has leant to us. &bsp;

Caring youngsters like you and others Ive met give me great hope for the future.&bsp; Keep up the good work and may all your dreams come true.&bsp; One more thing, if you can find a way to contact me again, I would be honored to sign this story for you before you put it on your wall.

Thanks for listening.

Especially you, dear Mackenzie.