Richard Ewers lived in the San Antonio area of Texas and had been rescuing abandoned animals there over the years, with his efforts culminating in twenty-seven animals living on his property.
Many were feral or semi-feral dogs that would have been unlikely to find a home if it wasn’t for this kind soul.
Sadly, a year ago, Richard received a devastating diagnosis. His doctor told him that he had terminal stomach cancer.
That’s when his true labor of love began. The seventy-one-year-old cancer patient had to find homes for each of his animals before he took his last breath.
The adoption effort
Several rescue organizations worked to help Richard by coming to his home to help out and care for the animals when he couldn’t. They also set to the task of finding homes for each one of the dogs in his care.
By the time he only had weeks left to live, they had already found loving homes for sixteen of the previously stray dogs.
Their efforts were boosted by the internet community taking notice. Donations as well as offers to adopt began to flood in from all over the country.
There were still several dogs remaining at Richard’s house when he went to stay in hospice, but the animal rescue organizations had managed to find potential adopters and other rescue organizations willing to house – either temporarily or permanently – the remaining rescue dogs.
They had a plan in place for each dog.
A wish fulfilled
Finally, Richard knew that each of his twenty-seven dogs had somewhere to go.
The group of volunteers who had been working so hard to make his final wish come true had been posting updates on Facebook.
They talked about Richard’s health, about each of the dogs, about their efforts, and about the adoptions that had been made possible by the efforts of everyone involved.
Then they made their next update post:
“It is with great sorrow that we have to let everyone know that Mr. Richard passed away last night. We do believe he found a sense of peace knowing his dogs would be ok.
We received word last night shortly after we left his house after feeding the dogs and setting final plans for the sanctuary to pick up.”
The post continued:
“Lucky made it to his new home today and the sanctuary will be here in San Antonio on Monday to receive the others.
We do plan to keep the page going for a while so we can give follow ups on everyone’s progress in their new lives.
Thank you goes out to everyone for your shares, your prayers, your donations, and all the volunteers that helped through the past year and a half.”
Richard did so much for so many: for the dogs in his care, for the adoptive families they have gone to, and for everyone who he touched the heart of with his display of genuine care for the animals he included in his last wish on this earth.
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