Cecil Williams, a courageous and loyal man who cannot see, found himself in a frightening situation when he lost consciousness and fell onto the subway tracks in New York City. However, he was accompanied by his unwavering companion, Orlando, a guide dog who fearlessly rushed to the rescue without any delay. This heartfelt incident showcases their incredible bond and the extraordinary bravery of Orlando in saving his beloved owner.
After the incident, Cecil Williams was admitted to the hospital, but Orlando remained faithfully by his side. Cecil had plans to get a new working dog in the near future, as his current 11-year-old black Lab was getting older. However, now that Orlando has shown his heroism, Cecil is considering the possibility of having both a working dog and a retired dog, depending on the circumstances.
On the other hand, the family who had previously raised Orlando as a pet has expressed their willingness to take him back if Cecil decides otherwise. The organization responsible for training and providing working dogs, Guiding Eyes for the Blind, offers these dogs free of charge. However, they do face limitations when it comes to covering the expenses of retired dogs.
Following an interview and a series of photographs published by The Related Press, which beautifully captured the strong connection between Cecil and Orlando, the St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital Center received an overwhelming response from kind-hearted individuals offering financial assistance and support. Given their expertise in matters related to guide dogs, Guiding Eyes for the Blind took charge of handling these inquiries.
Cecil Williams is facing a challenging path ahead, as he must make difficult decisions while considering his current circumstances and emotional well-being. If he decides to take care of both dogs, it will be crucial to receive financial assistance to ensure proper care for the retired Lab.
The organization is actively creating a fund to provide assistance, with specific details soon to be available on its website. If Cecil does not require any excess funds, they will be redirected to help other service dogs in need.
In a miraculous turn of events, both 61-year-old Cecil Williams and Orlando escaped serious injury when a passing train collided with them during the incident. Witnesses described Orlando’s frantic barking and brave efforts to prevent Cecil from falling off the platform as nothing short of heroic. As the train approached, Orlando jumped onto the tracks, even giving his owner a kiss in an attempt to motivate him to move.
As Cecil Williams carries on with his recovery efforts, he has expressed his gratitude and mentioned that he’s experiencing a slightly elevated mindset. However, he remains under medical supervision, dealing with some discomfort and bruises, while ongoing medical evaluations are being conducted to uncover the cause of his unexpected loss of consciousness.
This heartening story highlights the exceptional connection between a guide dog and its owner, while also honoring the overwhelming support from the community in times of challenges.