Steven served 14 years with the Infantry in the USMC, deploying to both Iraq and Afghanistan. After seeing combat in both countries, Steven was diagnosed with PTSD, but continued to push through it while still serving. He was retired a few years later, and noticed that the depression set in much worse after leaving the military. He struggles with paranoia, anxiety and depression on a daily basis, and feels like he is missing out on so much with his young family because of it. Steven’s hope is that an Assistance Dog will give him the confidence and peace-of-mind he was lacking to get back in the community, and enjoy life with his wife and kids.
Steven and FITZ bumped in July of 2019 – and they both knew right away that they were made for each other! FITZ will help Steven by anchoring to his rising anxiety levels, paying attention while in public places, and will interrupt negative behaviors. This will help keep Steven’s hypervigilance at bay, and allow him to be the family man he has always known he was capable of being. With FITZ as his new battle buddy, there is nothing Steven cannot do!
FITZ was named by The Anne Spychala Family Charitable Foundation.