LCC K-9 COMFORT DOGS IN EL PASO, TEXAS AND DAYTON, OHIO TO BRING COMFORT AND LOVE TO INDIVIDUALS FOLLOWING TWO TRAGIC MASS SHOOTINGS IN 24 HOURS
El Paso, Texas – 22 People Killed and Over 26 Wounded
Dayton, Ohio – 9 People Killed and Over 27 Wounded
Following invites to respond to two mass shootings last weekend – Texas and Ohio – Lutheran Church Charities deployed to both locations “to bring comfort to those who mourn” – Isaiah 61:2. We don’t have the answers to these tragedies, but we do have comfort, reassurance and hope through our Risen Savior, Jesus Christ!
LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry deployment teams have arrived at each location and are bringing comfort to devastated individuals, families, and the first responders who serve their community.
El Paso, Texas Update
On Saturday, August 3, a large crowd of back-to-school shoppers at Walmart in El Paso, Texas, were suddenly running for their lives when a young male began shooting throughout the store.
The number who have died as a result of the shooting has increased to 22 individuals. Over 26 wounded, with victims ranging from 4 months to 82 years old. Some of the injured are in critical condition.
Lutheran Church Charities has been invited to El Paso by Rev. Roger Schlechte, Rocky Mountain District President, Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod (LCMS), Rev. Dr. Karl Heimer, Pastor & CEO of Ysleta Lutheran Mission Human Care and Pastor Stephen Heimer from Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church both in the heart of El Paso, Texas. Rev. Martin Danner from Bethany Lutheran Church in Austin, Texas, and Janice Marut, Regional Director for the LCC K-9 Ministry Southwest Region, are assisting us with deployment arrangements.
LCC President / CEO, Tim Hetzner, and LCC Director of K-9 Ministries, Rich Martin with Ruthie Comfort Dog, are in El Paso with the following K-9 Comfort Dog teams: Abner (Bethany – Austin, Texas), Damaris (Memorial – Katy, Texas), Gabriel (Messiah – Houston, Texas), Joy (Gloria Dei – Houston, Texas), Martha (Bethany – Austin, Texas), and Phoebe (St. Paul – Fort Worth, Texas).
Some of the places LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs have been to in El Paso include:
· Zion Lutheran Church
· Vigil for Javier Amir Rodriguez (15 years old) at Horizon High School Stadium
· Multiple visits to Del Sol Medical Center, where the victims were transported
· First Responders Event
Dayton, Ohio Update
Early on Sunday, August 4 at 1:00am, people were still enjoying a beautiful summer night in the heart of Dayton’s Oregon District waiting in line to enter Ned Peppers Bar when a man approached and began shooting. Already, 9 people have been reported killed, over 27 wounded, and countless numbers traumatized as they ran to escape an unimaginable attack on their lives.
Lutheran Church Charities has been invited by Rev. Kevin Wilson, Ohio District President, Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod (LCMS), Rev. Mark Carlson from Emmanuel in Kettering, Ohio and John Pyron, Manager for Disaster Services with Lutheran Social Services. Rev. Phil Esala, former pastor at Emmanuel, is also assisting with deployment arrangements.
The following LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry teams are in Dayton to serve this devastated and hurting community, and all of the first responders who bravely serve them: Anna (Trinity – Toledo, Ohio), Mercy (Our Savior – Louisville, Kentucky), Rosie (Atonement – Columbus, Ohio) and Jared (Holy Cross – Fort Wayne, Indiana).
After Mass Shooting Comfort Dogs Provide Love in Dayton
(Tuesday, August 6, 2019 – WLWT)
Some of the places LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs have been to in Dayton include:
· Community Vigil on 5th Street (near shooting)
· FEMA Disaster Recovery Center – Dayton Children’s Hospital Health Pavilion
· FEMA Disaster Recovery Center – Trotwood-Madison High School
· Dayton Convention Center
· Miami Valley Community Action Partnership
· St. Vincent De Paul Gateway Shelter for Women & Families
While comforting individuals in the Oregon District where the shooting occurred, a young woman who was there that night shared this with our handlers while petting Anna Comfort Dog:
“I could sit here all afternoon with the dogs. I live close and come here all the time. I was here that night and don’t want to remember the terrible incident that occurred in this neighborhood that I love so much. Now when I come here, I’ll remember being with the comfort dogs.”
We don’t know why these mass shootings took place, but we know that comfort is needed at this time to help people heal! Help us to be the presence of Jesus Christ to the El Paso and Dayton communities.
LCC never goes where we are not invited and the LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs NEVER charge those we serve. We pick up all of our travel, hotel, and meals costs. We also always put Boots and Paws on the ground within 24 hours (often less) from the time we get the invite.
Please help LCC as we bring the Mercy, Compassion, Presence and Proclamation of Jesus Christ to those who are suffering and in need. Together, we can be the Hands, Feet and Presence of Jesus Christ to frightened communities.
Please support us by prayer and if you are so moved, help us with travel expenses.