START A PETITION 27,000,000 members: the world's largest community for good
May 28, 2010

Type:Memorial (for the deceased)
To Honor:Pet(s)
Location:, United States
Today I had to put my best friend and companion Norm down; he was 14 yrs old and I guess a misfit from the start. 
A person bred a black lab to sell the puppies, when they were born the litter had 11 pups, but 2 were not Lab they looked like German Shepard's, the neighbor beside these people had a pedigree German Shepard.
The humans decided the 2 Shepard's were "not sellable" and did nothing to care for them, no shots no worming and even moved the 2 "misfits" from the mamas tit till all the sellable pups were full.  I rescued Norm and 4 days after I got him he developed maternal parvo because the humans removing him from the breast milk stopped him for getting protection from his mother. 
I was faced with a decision and because of life's circumstance I was very poor that that point and could not immediately pay a large bill, the vet said he would accept 10$ a month because I was such a good customer for 30 years and he knew I would pay the bill.  After a week in hospital my little buddy came home very sick but alive and on the road to recovery.  That started a 14 year companionship of love.
Over the next few years I was given a diagnosis for a condition that has no cure, I was going to loose the use of my hands, arms and legs I would end up as I am today in braces with artificial joints and bones.  Before this happened Norm was trained as an assistance/service dog by trainers from K-9 cops, Military and myself, he was a quick learner.
Norm was so good at what he did when I started having deep muscle breakdown from my illness Norm was trained to sniff out the area before it became a serious problem, I have had 9 surgeries on my legs or feet totally because a dog sniffed, sat and alerted something was wrong.  The first time the orthopedic surgeon said he was very uncomfortable doing deep muscle surgery based on a dogs opinion, but with my instance he did the first exploratory surgery and Norm was right. 
Fact is Norm was always right.
For the next 14 years as I got worse and was often recovering from surgery Norm was my hands and helper.  He could get the phone, open the door, pick-up bandages and put them in the trash, pick up my medicine bottles; but the most important thing he did was give me life.
I write this for all to read because we often forget what an animal can do for a human and what a human can do for an animal, I saved Norm from Parvo and he saved me back.
There are no words to express my grief and loss.  
I think what Norm disserved was life, but what he would want all to know is he had a very good life, he had a job and as much love as any person and dog can share and a friend who when it came down to it put Norm above all else.
Remember Norm when you think about getting an animal, you never know what the little sickly rescued pup will turn out to be. 
Give them love and share your life and in the end there will be much pain and sadness, but there is also the story, like Norms story full of richness and life because of a simple act of rescue.
If you choose please note this story, just for Norm and all those alone humans and animals whose life can be so changed when they are just put together.
I Love you Norm, I always will.
Visibility: Everyone
Posted: Friday May 28, 2010, 12:16 pm
Tags: love life dogs service companions euthanasia [add/edit tags]

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Angela Z. (101)
Friday May 28, 2010, 12:55 pm
What an amazing story of compassion and love.

If I am lucky enough to ever be able to share my life with another of these most loving of creatures, I will make sure it is one of these....who would otherwise never have a chance.

Thank you, Bill.
Thank you, Norm.

Mary G. (46)
Friday May 28, 2010, 1:20 pm
All of my animal friends have been rescued from some of the strangest past homes. They were all special and I loved them all. There will always be a lttle bit of your being that will always be occupied by your best friend, Norm.

Margo R. (14)
Friday May 28, 2010, 2:05 pm
What a wonderful story! Thank you so much for sharing it.......and God bless both you and Norm!!!!

Cheryl Benson (375)
Friday May 28, 2010, 3:41 pm
I grieved for several years after I lost my 21 year old cat. I don't know that I will be able to ever have a pet again, I don't know how you managed to take care of him, I wouldn't be able to. I am grateful you found him and found and loved each other. Grieving takes it's time, and I hope you consider getting another service dog soon. My heart goes out to you and Norm is in a great place right now, in no pain and happy and I have little doubt you may well see him again Namaste Bill

Nancy M. (201)
Friday May 28, 2010, 6:20 pm
Thanks for the story Bill. I am sorry for the loss of Norm. You were both truly blessed to have found each other.

Cher C. (1471)
Saturday May 29, 2010, 10:02 am

R.I.P. Norm!

Karina P. (162)
Saturday May 29, 2010, 11:58 am
Thank you for sharing, Bill. I'm so sorry for your loss.
Rest in peace, Norm...

Shirley H. (49)
Saturday May 29, 2010, 1:06 pm
What a moving, wonderful story to gifted all C2 members with, Bill. Thank you for sharing your life with Norm with us. I have a lump in my throat as I type this. No words of sympathy will ever heal your wounded Heart, bill, but I send them, along with my Prayer that you will heal and someday see your Best Friend Norm, again.
Blessings to you,
Shirley H.

H H. (0)
Saturday May 29, 2010, 1:11 pm
What a wonderful story of love given and love returned. In a cruel world it's so nice to see that taking a chance and saving something that someone else feels has no worth shows in the end that it is a treasure worth more than gold.More chances must be made to help save so many worthy animals. Thank you for sharing your story and I know that you and Norm will meet again one day. Good luck in finding another service dog to help you. Best wishes.

RevLorelei L. (392)
Saturday May 29, 2010, 4:20 pm

RevLorelei L. (392)
Saturday May 29, 2010, 4:23 pm
Hmm, that should have read we love you Norm and Bill. One day again, an unwanted dog or cat will adopt us, sure as the sun. :)

Pam J. (77)
Saturday May 29, 2010, 6:18 pm
Your story made me cry . . . for the love you shared with Norm and the sadness of losing such a special friend. I know in my heart that one day the two of you will be reunited.

Tamara WILLIAMS (176)
Saturday May 29, 2010, 6:26 pm
I am so sorry for your loss. They become part of the family and it is hard when you lose one. But your story was great and I appreciate you sharing it was us.

Debbie C. (63)
Saturday May 29, 2010, 9:06 pm
What a lovely story! Sometimes the "little sickly ones" turn out to be the best! I know your heart is breaking right now and I send you a hug Bill.

Mary T. (185)
Saturday May 29, 2010, 10:59 pm
Thank you for the story Norm, dogs are a person best friend they don't judge you and all they want is to be loved and cared for, I am so sorry for your loss, but I am so glad that you both found each other and God bless you.

Alicia V. (181)
Sunday May 30, 2010, 4:31 am
What a brave, intelligent and lovely being. May Norm have a new beginning in Heaven. An angel on Earth.

Peggy A. (109)
Sunday May 30, 2010, 10:46 am
I am so sorry about your loss of your loved one Norm.Someday you will be together again,but then you will not need him for a service dog-he'll just be your friend. RIP Norm

MARIA P. (100)
Monday May 31, 2010, 9:36 am
I'm so sorry for your loss...Thank you for sharing this story Bill. Always keep the good memories and always remember that Norm was lucky because you loved him and you were blessed because he loved you.

Nikki C. (7)
Tuesday June 1, 2010, 10:45 am

"I write this for all to read because we often forget what an animal can do for a human and what a human can do for an animal, I saved Norm from Parvo and he saved me back"
Bill, truly one of the most beautiful and profound words ever written when reflecting on the relationship between humans and animals. I cannot tell you how much your words resonate with me.I am so sorry for your loss.Thanksyou forsharing your story. Dee I thank you for forwarding this touching story.

Eleni P. (0)
Saturday June 12, 2010, 7:14 am
thanks for reminding us about true petloving.

jacqui s. (45)
Saturday June 12, 2010, 10:57 am
Thankyou Bill for sharing such a loving tribute to the loving, loyal companion you had in Norm, my heart goes out to you at this difficult time, best wishes, and R.I.P Norm.

Ingrid Scott (31)
Sunday June 13, 2010, 6:50 am
We too had a shepard-lab cross - Squall looked like a black shepard with small floppy lab ears. An amazing dog - so intelligent we decided he really was just a man in a fur coat who needed a shave. He was as much a family member as either of our kids, and the ultimate neighborhood diplomat and peacemaker. We still miss him some ten years after having to put him down when he became too old and sick to enjoy life. My heart goes out to you.

Tamara WILLIAMS (176)
Monday June 14, 2010, 7:35 am

Denise Lytle (551)
Monday June 21, 2010, 9:40 am
Bill, I'm so sorry to hear this & so long after the fact. I'm sure Norm is having the time of his life right now with all my furbabies, I can see him getting along well with Brandy (she was a German shepherd/yellow Lab mix). I know how much Norm meant to you & I'm sure the feeling was mutual.

jl m. (1)
Thursday July 29, 2010, 9:38 am
i'm sorry for your loss. thank you for sharing this loving tribute. norm was lucky to have you as his best friend.

moggy w. (119)
Sunday October 24, 2010, 10:55 pm
Norm's story, and yours, moved me to tears. I'm happy that you had each other. I went to your page because of the comment you wrote on the shelter story,sent you star. You sounded like unusually kind person. Glad I did and read Norm's story. moggy w.

Mette K. (99)
Friday November 26, 2010, 11:59 am
I just read this wonderful story and it brought tears to my eyes. Not sad tears but happy tears. How lucky you were to have Norm in your life and he was lucky to have you.

Winnie H. (3)
Monday February 14, 2011, 6:00 pm
Just happened upon your story because of a comment you made on another article. I wanted to tell you I was was very moved. Though your journey is a difficult one, know that you are an inspiring example of courage and endurance. Norm is to be admired, but so are you. Blessings to you always!

Jonathan Y. (39)
Tuesday June 7, 2011, 7:16 pm
Thank you Bill for sharing this story.

It will help people just to read it. I hope that when my best friend goes, I can write straight from the heart like you did.

Spooky Cat (413)
Tuesday April 17, 2012, 4:24 pm
Bill, I am so very sorry I missed this. I was net-less for a while, I was just giving you a star and notice this share on your profile. You and Norm had a great run. I know there are no words, so I won't even try. Love, Spooks

Michelle G. (3)
Thursday May 10, 2012, 10:11 am
Norm was deserving not just for what he did for you, but that he was. He existed, therefore he should have been afforded respect. The people who have dogs that are pure bread and the others are garbage, are just garbage themselves. I am so glad for you and for Norm that you rescued him. There is nothing like the love and loyalty of a dog. Humans could learn much from this. Usually they do not, they just think they are better than animals, therefore deserving. Sad, they miss that boat. Good bye Norm, and much rest and dog treats up in "Doggy Heaven".

elegantgypsy rose (35)
Wednesday August 14, 2013, 9:43 pm
bill, i have frequently noted your posts and today i chose to visit your profile page.
as a dog lover/rescuer my heart goes out to you. i know that your beloved Norm left this planet some time ago, but i also know, he never left your heart.
i have some like that too.
i just wanted to tell you that i honor your words and your courage. elegantgypsy


Bill C.
male, age 63, single
Southern Pines, NC, USA
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