by    0   2
AbledNews Banner shows a panorama of differently-abled people as black silhouettes against a horizon of world city landmarks such as Big Ben, The CN Tower, the Sydney Opera House and so on in a transparent green against a sunrise over the Earth as seen from space with the AbledNews logo at the top over an icon of an RSS feed in the same green set inside a small rounded square set inside the rounded green Abled triangle set against a black rounded square icon box.
AbledNews Post Banner shows 60 year old Cecil WIlliams, a blind African American man lying on a gurney in a hospital emergency room with the top of his head banadaged and stroking his black labrador guide dog Orlando on the side of his head. The headline reads: Miracle In NYC: Guide Dog Tries To Save Master - Both Fall Under Train And Survive.

Insurance Coverage Ending For Valiant Guide Dog – Facing Adoption

 

It was a horrifying scene that unfolded for Tuesday morning commuters in New York City’s Harlem neighborhood. It had tragedy written all over it as 60 year-old Cecil Williams, who is African American and blind, fainted and fell back onto the tracks at the 125th Street subway station as a north-bound A-train was coming towards the platform. He pulled his 10 year-old black labrador guide dog Orlando with him.

 

There was no way this was going to have a good ending as the front car and half of the second car rumbled over them. What happened next is being called the 125th Street Miracle. 

 

A construction flagger shouted to Williams to lay flat between the tracks, and save for a gash on his head, that’s what saved him and Orlando.

 

Because he admitted to taking insulin and some other medications, it’s quite likely Williams might have been suffering from a low blood sugar. Emergency workers were able to get him onto a backboard and placed a neck brace on him and carried him up to the platform where EMS crews checked his vital signs and took him to the hospital.

 

 

Early media reports were calling Orlando a Seeing Eye guide dog, however, that’s a misnomer. James Kutsch Jr., President and CEO of the famous guide dog school confirmed to Abled.com that Orlando was not trained by the Seeing Eye, whose name is also a registered trademark, but rather by Guiding Eyes For The Blind.

 

In this photo, Laura Meddens, the Co-Founder of Abled.com stands with her new Seeing Eye dog Nugget next to a statue of Seeing Eye Co-Founder Morris Frank and his guide dog Buddy. Nugget is a beautiful chocolate brown labrador, while Buddy is a female German Shepherd. Laura has shoulder-length blond brownish blond hair and is wearing a brown coat with lambswool trim and black boots. The statue of Morris Frank shows him wearing a grey suit with a white shirt and red tie. The photo was taken in Morristown, New Jersey, the headquarters of the Seeing Eye.

 

The Seeing Eye is the most famous guide dog school in the world, founded in 1929, and headquartered in Morristown, New Jersey.

 

Abled® CoFounder, Laura Meddens trained with her first guide dog Wagner, a Golden Retriever, there in 2006. She is currently finishing training with her new guide dog Nugget, after ‘Waggie’ (as he was nicknamed) lost his battle with canine lymphoma and erlichia (tick disease) in May, 2013.

 

In the photo to the left, Laura is standing with Nugget next to the statue of Seeing Eye Co-Founder Morris Frank and his guide-dog Buddy in Morristown.

 

 

 

Many onlookers to the near-tragedy at the subway station wondered why Cecil Williams was so close to the edge of the platform with his back to the tracks, but he was likely disoriented as he felt more faint – diabetics suffer from perceptual narrowing if their blood sugar drops too low and are often mistaken for being drunk. Other bystanders pointed out that his guide dog Orlando was trying to pull him away from the edge of the platform.

Many people wondered why someone didn’t step forward sooner to pull Williams away from the edge of the platform.

 

Because Orlando turns 11 in January, he’ll be retired as a service dog and as a result, WIlliams will lose the insurance coverage that pays for his food and veterinary costs, forcing Williams to have to put him up for adoption because he can’t afford to keep him.

 

Good samaritans have already started two crowdfunding campaigns to help Cecil Williams keep Orlando. As of Thursday morning, an indiegogo.com campaign had raised over $64,000, surpassing its $50,000 goal, while a campaign at gofundme.com had raised over $37,000 of an increased $50,000 goal. We’ll keep an eye on the fundraisers over the course of the next week and provide you with updates.

 

 

Photo shows Abled.com Co-Founder Laura Meddens on the right hugging her Seeing Eye trainer Janice Abbott with Laura's new Seeing Eye dog Nugget, a chocolate labrador,  sitting in front of them.

 

Laura Meddens (R) and Nugget and their Seeing Eye trainer Janice Abbott (L) wish Cecil and Orlando a speedy recovery and many safe and happy years together. Photo by John Keane – The Seeing Eye®

Related Stories Banner

 

Special-Report-AbledResearch Headline link banner shows a silhouette of Abled.com Co-Founder Laura Meddens walking with her Seeing Eye guide dog Wagner against a backdrop of Waggie's T-Cells as seen under a microscope with the headline: Cancer A Brave Guide Dog's Legacy. Click here to go to the article.

 

AbledWarriors-Combat-Stress-Warrior-Canine-Connection-373x273

 

 

Related Organizations banner

 

Abled Public Service Ad for Guiding Eyes For The Blind. The logo shows an outline illustration of a person hugging their guide dog, apparent by the harness that is visible. Click to go to their website for an update on Cecil WIlliams and Orlando.

 

Abled Public Service Ad for The Seeing Eye Guide Dog Training School in Morristown New Jersey showing a German Shepherd sitting in the sun on a green lawn with a black lab, a golden lab and a golden retriever with the caption 'Independence and Dignity Since 1929. Click here to visit their website.

 

Abled Public Service Ad for Warrior Canine Connection where service members and Veterans with combat stress take on the critical mission of training service dogs for fellow Wounded Warriors. Click here to go to their website.

 

Abled Public Service announcement shows a Golden Retriever puppy standing with its front paws hanging over an orange board with the following text on the board: Your Golden Retriever Could Save Others From Cancer. We need 3,000 purebred Golden Retrievers for a groundbreaking study. Will you join us? The Golden Retriever Lifetime Study aims to learn how to prevent cancer in dogs, and the results may eventually help humans too. We’re looking for Golden Retrievers younger than 2 years of age with a pedigree of three generations. Join the force - 3,000 Goldens strong! Click here to learn more and enroll your dog by connecting to the Morris Animal Foundation, where science meets Hope.

AboutAbled link Banner shows Abled Co-Founder Laura Meddens looking out at the seaside at sunset in Curaçao with the text Laura Meddens: An Abled Vision For Global Accessibility, Inclusion and Equality. Click here to go to the AboutAbled page.
Click here to return to the Abled.com homepage.

thoughts on this post

Back to Top