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A Wheelie Queen Is Born


Jan Horton and Carmel, a Summit puppy in training, get to know one another.
Reprinted from PN February 2002

Volunteer Janice Horton found a new "career" working with Summit Assistance Dogs.

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With her mind still running at full-speed, Jan Horton, a 49-year-old paraplegic from polio who was forced to retire from a high-energy career because her body was breaking down, had days when she felt incredible frustration and futility. Resting sounds easy to people for whom it's a choice. But to Horton, for whom rest was a requirement, it seemed more a prison than a freedom.

In church Horton noticed a young lady who brought dogs right into the sanctuary. Horton thought this unusual, but there the woman sat every week with a dog at her side—and not always the same dog. One week she had a small golden retriever with gentle eyes and a soft expression, then a tall black-and-tan dog with an intense stare. And another time, a little black dog with funny, bent ears.

Horton asked her brother, the pastor, who the woman was, and when John introduced her to Sue Meinzinger, the Summit Assistance Dogs program founder, Horton found a new direction that helped her see the potential for meaningful service. Read Jan Horton's story, as told to Deborah Jager Hall, in the February 2002 PN/Paraplegia News.

 

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A Wheelie Queen Is Born

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