The first time I met Phil, he saved my life from an enraged housecat. It was my first day of community service at the SPCA of Northern Nevada. I was attempting to clean the cat’s cage, and the cat was having none of it. I was foolishly making an attempt to pick the cat up and put it in a crate. It gave me one of those looks that says, “If your hands move another inch toward me, I’ll take them from you...” Phil saw what was happening and rushed over to soothe the cat and make sure that I walked away with all ten fingers still firmly attached.
I can never remember that cat’s name or really anything else about it. But if anyone could remember the details or what it was that ever happened to the cat, it would be Phil. You see, Phil has devoted a huge portion of his life to the care and rescue of Northern Nevada’s shelter animals. He truly has a knack for it. He’s been bitten and scratched more times than I can imagine, and yet he still dives in head first to the care of sick, wounded, or unwanted animals; and he does it with a smile on his face. At some point he has devoted time to nearly every rescue group in the area, and in doing so has saved countless lives that were in far more peril than mine was when we met.
I wasn’t the only person that he met at the SPCA. He also met his future wife, Koelyn, there. She was a volunteer while he was an employee; both of them were in high school at the time. One thing led to another and four years later they got married in a beautiful ceremony at the Rose Garden in Idlewild Park. Today they live together with a bevy of rescued animals.
Unfortunately devoting your life to saving others doesn’t mean that you won’t have struggles of your own. Phil is currently in Stage 5 Kidney Failure. He is receiving Dialysis treatments three times a week and he is on the transplant list. He was put on the transplant list in September of last year and at the time he was told that he would receive his transplant in 6 – 18 months. That’s a large window of time, and to fill that time he’ll need to continue his Dialysis treatments.
Phil and Koelyn have insurance, and it’s covering large portions of his treatments and the eventual transplant. However it isn’t covering all of it. The hospital bills are quickly piling up and becoming too much for the two of them to handle alone.
The lives that Phil has saved primarily belong to those of a four legged persuasion, and as such, there is very little that they can do to return the favor. So I’m asking for those of you who have lived with and loved rescued pets for your help. If you’ve ever rescued a pet, or even just enjoyed the company of one, perhaps you can find it in yourself to donate something on their behalf. Phil and Koelyn have started a fundraiser at www.youcaring.com and every single cent helps. If you can spare anything, a donation would be massively appreciated. If you can’t spare a donation at the moment, then please just take a few seconds to share the link below with your friends and your family, spread the word.
Someone who has given an immeasurable amount of love and care to the world needs a bit in return. So please, remember the love that you’ve felt for the animals in your life, and think of the love and happiness in the world that Phil made possible simply by living the life that he chose. Spread the word, after all, isn’t someone who has devoted their life to making the world a better place the kind of person that you’d want to keep around?
Click below to donate and read more of Phil’s story…