Tuesday, December 1, 2009

We've Got Mail: A Mother's Gratitude

We love getting your cards, letters and emails. This is an email we received recently from Renee Bevan, the mother of a young GDB graduate. Her words eloquently describe the difference a Guide Dog has made in her son's life, and we thought it was worth passing along. In her words:

John and Houston
Hi there,

My son was in one of your summer classes - he graduated the end of July. He was paired with the most amazing dog - Houston. John started college in the fall and Houston lives in the dorm with John. Houston is the most popular student on campus. John is in the orchestra and when they have concerts, Houston is right up there on the stage with him. The entire campus has embraced having John and Houston on campus (Lynchburg College) and they respect the rules and requirements of a guide dog.

I have had and trained a lot of dogs in my life and I have never seen or met a dog nearly as clever as Houston. He transitions well from our home to college, he gets along with our pet dogs, but most importantly he takes great care of John. John is *very* regimented and consistent with Houston with respect to feeding, relieving, training... and Houston clearly is thriving with their routine. I don't know how your selection process works with respect to the matching of the dog with the person but this pair was a perfect match. Having Houston has given John more confidence to travel to new places and he travels much faster and more efficiently with Houston.

I am attaching a picture of John and Houston that I snapped when John was on his way to his first college concert. It speaks volumes about the confidence, independence and pride that both of them have. They were walking so fast we couldn't keep up! I hope you enjoy it and I just wanted to thank you for this most amazing gift to my son.


Renee Bevan


  1. What a great story! Way to go Houston. I love hearing stories about what great matches GDB makes.

    We raised Houston's brother Harvard (male black lab). We met Houston at Fun Day in 2008. Harvard's currently in class and scheduled to graduate on Dec 12. All three pups from this litter graduated as they have another brother Hardy who now a breeder!

  2. Just another tool in building the most amazing man, John Pastorius. God Bless all those who give their time to training these amazing puppies.

  3. That is such a beautiful story - what a great team walking confidently to their concert!

  4. Wonderful story and photo. I want to share it with everyone!

  5. This is such a good story. It's nice to see one of our puppy raisers group's dogs in the blog for GDB. It really helps to remind us about the good things we do for these people.

  6. I had not seen this web site until our puppy group secretary sent this link! Hearing your beautiful story and seeing the picture of Houston and John brought instant tears to my eyes. Houston will always hold a very special place in my heart and, of course, said heart has needed much healing since raising Houston and having to let him go. Your story makes me so happy to be Houstons puppy raiser and reminds me of the reason why I keep doing this when I can't help but fall in love with my puppies! I love that John has Houston! What a wonderful team! I would love more pics and updates too! :)

  7. I'm John's great Aunt, and I've absolutely fallen in love with Houston for being the great dog he is and taking such good care of John.

    Angie thank you so much for the job you did socializing and training Houston. Houston is a joy to be around whether he is working or playing.

    It takes great strength of character to be able to give up the puppies you've raised, but all of us who love Houstong thank you.
    Great Aunt Alice