PEPPERSMINT/ShutterstockFor one California-based flight attendant of more than 40 years, air time isn’t limited to quickie work trips around the globe—it’s a way for her to give back to soldiers who are separated from their service dogs, many of whom save lives.
Molli Oliver works for United Airlines and has made it her mission to reunite canines with the veterans they served with after they’ve returned home. According to an NBC Nightly News segment, delivering these dogs to their soldier companions can cost thousands of dollars, and sadly, they often wind up in military kennels separated from the handlers they know and love, sometimes hundreds or thousands of miles away.
Oliver, however, has taken it upon herself to streamline this process whenever she can by flying the dogs to their soldier owners. “Even if it was just one dog at a time, I was happy to do that,” she said of her projects, which went viral on YouCaring, a crowdfunding website. She raised nearly $20,000 of her $5,000 goal to give the proper forever home to a Labrador retriever, the fifth dog that she was able to return to a veteran. “Because I just saw the joy in the dog and the handler being reunited, no matter who was doing that.”
Oliver’s love of dogs came naturally. Her mother raised dogs, so she grew up around them. “My love for animals has been since I was born and raised with them,” she said to NBC. Her passion project stems from this love of animals and her country alike.
To Oliver, her charity is a “win-win” display of gratitude for the troops she respects and admires.
“I think that the dogs deserve a nice retirement because they’ve served our country, and they’ve protected my freedom for…65 years, along with everybody else’s,” she said to NBC.
Looks like soldiers aren’t the only one serving—and this nation is all the better for it.
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