Kelly has been an animal lover since the day she was born, and having been born with a disability became a good thing because that meant she could always have a service dog by her side. Having a service dog was just the beginning, as over the past decade this amazing supporter starting volunteering as a dog walker from Hearts Alive Village. Kelly was now able to walk the most difficult dogs and since she uses her wheelchair, wear them out. She has helped countless dogs learn to have better manners on a leash, and provides much needed exercise and enrichment these dogs so desperately need for better mental health, all while they wait for a loving new home all their own.
Kelly’s service dogs have always been a part of her mission to help homeless animals. For years, Pele, her Golden Retriever, with his sweet nature, has helped frightened shelter dogs feel at ease. Her current service dog, Wonka, greets people and animals every day at our adoption center. His big, bouncy play bow helps dogs who’ve gone through a rough time remember how to have fun, and just be dogs again. Also joining her family was PeeWee, a deaf pit bull mix who became an ambassador for her breed and now proudly helps serve others as a therapy dog.
Kelly’s dream of rescuing animals became a reality when she and Christy Stevens became friends after volunteering at the same shelter, and eventually founded Hearts Alive Village. Kelly now manages the daily operations of a busy adoption center and pet supply store. Her positive attitude is contagious, and the way she lives her life inspires everyone around her and brings out the best in all of us.