Therapy Dogs Help Those Mourning After Parkland Shooting - NBC 6 South Florida
Parkland School Tragedy

Parkland School Tragedy

Marking One Year Since the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Shooting

Therapy Dogs Help Those Mourning After Parkland Shooting

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Comfort Dogs Helping Parkland Shooting Victims

    Comfort dogs are stepping up to help provide therapy to the survivors of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

    (Published Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018)

    What to Know

    • The comfort dogs have been helping victims of the Parkland school shooting.

    • The dogs come from the Illinois Lutheran Church Charities.

    • The golden retrievers responded to the devastations at Sandy Hook, Las Vegas and the Boston Marathon bombings.

    The Parkland community is still mourning those lost in last week’s tragedy. But there’s one special crew that’s making the rounds across the community, bringing comfort to those who need it the most.

    “It doesn’t take away their pain and suffering, but it does take them to a different place for that special moment,” said Richard Martin, of the LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry.

    Martin was walking Jacob, a K-9 comfort dog. They arrived last Thursday on behalf of Illinois’ Lutheran Church Charities.

    The comfort crew is busy, stopping at churches, hospitals and the 17 crosses outside of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

    Surveillance Video Shows Moments During Parkland School Shooting

    [NATL-MI] Surveillance Video Shows Moments During Parkland School Shooting

    Surveillance footage shows then-school resource deputy Scot Peterson standing outside of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School building where gunman Nikolas Cruz opened fire on students and faculty inside, then running out of view, not to be seen again on other school cameras.

    (Published Thursday, March 15, 2018)

    “Some [people] cry, some smile,” said Martin.

    While there’s plenty of pain, but the paws bring a certain sense of calmness.

    “There’s no explanation. They just bring happiness even during moments of sadness like this,” said one student.

    The golden retrievers responded to the devastations at Sandy Hook, Las Vegas and the Boston Marathon bombings. Their goal is getting victims to open up. Trainers take time to sit down and speak with those in need of some canine comfort.

    “It allows them to focus on something good, safe and kind,” said Martin.

    They’ve stopped at a dozen Broward County schools over the last three days, including Riverglades Elementary. Heather Meaney says her two kids couldn’t wait.

    Parkland Shooting Victim's Aunt Pleads For Gun Reform

    [NATL-MI]Parkland Shooting Victim's Aunt Pleads For Gun Reform at Walkout

    The aunt of a Marjory Stoneman Douglas shooting victim attended a walkout Wednesday at the Parkland, Florida, high school where her niece was killed on Feb. 14. "I beg viewers to stand up with these kids and fight with us to get this gun legislation in this country changed," Gina Fontana told NBC 6's Ari Odzer. 

    (Published Wednesday, March 14, 2018)

    “They got off the school buses and right there by the cafeteria, they were able to just talk and hug the dogs,” said Heather Meaney, a parent.

    The dogs will be in the area through the weekend. 

    The church doesn't charge the victims for this service and rely on donations to be able to travel to tragedy sites. If you'd like to make a donation, you can do so by clicking here

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