Searsport woman reflects on 'Points of Light' award
AUGUSTA (WGME) – A Searsport woman is reflecting on her "Points of Light" award from George H.W. Bush's Points of Light Foundation.
It's awarded to those making a difference by volunteering.
She's doing that by training service dogs.
The pups are a little rambunctious right now, but soon they will become top-notch assistant dogs thanks to "Salute of Service."
Kathy Hect has been training service dogs for 30 years.
Her husband served in Desert Storm, that's how the first met Bush.
This September, her nonprofit was recognized by the Bush administration with a "Points of Light" award.
"It's a recognition of the volunteer work that I do with the veterans and it's an incredibly wonderful honor," Hect said.
With Bush's passing, she's determined to continue her work now more than ever.
Billie Ward, a Vietnam vet from Bangor, recently got his service dog Indy.
Ward says Indy has made a huge difference in his life.
"Indy is my mobility, my stability,” Ward said. “I have a tendency to fall."
The program helps veterans build an important bond.
"To see them go from being wild and crazy and so forth to a well-trained dog that behaves is great,” Ward said.
Hect says watching vets complete the course is the best part for her.
"Watching the veteran be able to take their life back and fully engage in the activities that they want to and know that I was a small part of that.is just incredibly rewarding," Hect said.