And the wheel keeps turning

Published 9:46 pm Thursday, May 21, 2015

By Leonard Rizzo

What a wonderful event, my annual Gala at Tryon Estates is. If you’ve never been, be sure to make it next year. To all the wonderful people and businesses that donated and bought the prizes, my kids and I cannot thank you enough.


We also had some special guests, little Joey, the famous Chihuahua, that was born without his front legs due to inbreeding. Joey always steals the show with the acrobatic way he maneuvers his cart and that he’ll kiss anyone who gets close to his licker. Joey is a ham and he works for treats.  His presence makes a room that is already filled with love seem to burst with joy.


Sweet and beautiful Jake was also a guest, brought by my dear friends who run the SAP program (the Soldier Animal Project). Some great things are in store for these wonderful ladies whose project is near and dear to my heart due to a great old friend who thought of Lennie’s kids in a big way. More will be told on that in the future. Meanwhile Jake was magnificent with his “animal in training” jacket on. Just the thought of some troubled soldier side-by-side with the beautiful boy fills my heart with joy and my eyes with tears.


Out of nowhere some lady walks up to me with a Jack Russell on leash.

“Who is this?” I ask.

“Her name is Daisy Mae and she’s five years old and I can’t keep her.” It seems the lady has cataracts and a few other problems and someone told her to see me and I would help.

I smile and I hug her and explain, “There is nothing I could do now during the gala. Leave your name and number and I’ll contact you tomorrow after dialysis.” Daisy Mae is on her hind legs trying to get up to me, so I kneel down and receive a boatload of kisses.  I tearfully get up and tell the lady, “Don’t worry dear, things will work out, have faith.”

A few minutes later Dr. Donna Raines and her husband Elwood, come over to greet me.  I call El “big fella,” only those who know him would understand. I explain to Donna about little Daisy Mae and that I’ll probably be bringing her to Landrum vet tomorrow to have her checked out and hopefully find a good home for her.

Donna asks, “What’s she like Lennie?”

“Sweet as all get out,” I respond, “come on over and I’ll introduce you.”


Donna and El fell in love with Daisy Mae and it seems that the big fella’s mom recently lost her dog and is in the market for a girl just like Daisy Mae. Daisy went home with Donna and El that very evening and, so far so good, more in the future.

On Monday I learned of Big Boy, a 15-year-old St. Bernard mix who was struck by a car and his hipbone was popped out of place. Big Boy’s parents left word asking if I could help because they left all they had for this old timer. So, I went in on Tuesday morning and paid the bill.


I got to hug the big boy and thanked Dr. Shaun Boone who did a great job of mending Big Boy. I like Dr. Shaun a lot but I prefer when the vets hire lady doctors, they hug better.
I left the vet’s office and sat down on the bench outside as I’ve often done and talked to the Boss.
“It seems You won’t allow me to rest on my laurels Lord, lest I get complacent. I must be reminded that I am just a cog and it is You who keeps the wheel turning. Thank You Lord, for the opportunity and thanks for listening.”