12/20 11:25am EST – Happily Ever After, the story of Cecil and Orlando as reported by The NY Daily News.
12/19 7:40pm EST – Notable video clips and news stories:
- Orlando’s trainer, Jessy DiNapoli, on Good Day New York
- News12 visits Guiding Eyes Headquarters and Training Center to observe guide dog training.
- CNN reports on the entire story.
- The full press conference from Wednesday afternoon is still available via CBS.
Released 12/19 5:30pm EST – Celebrating the Miracle of Cecil and Orlando
Guiding Eyes dog Orlando is receiving widespread praise across the globe for his dedication to blind handler, Cecil Williams, who lost consciousness and fell onto a Manhattan subway track on Tuesday.
Cecil and Orlando miraculously escaped the incident without serious injury. Cecil was already making arrangements to retire his dog in early 2014 and return to Guiding Eyes for a successor guide. While he initially planned to return Orlando to the volunteers who raised him, he’s now considering keeping him as his pet after an overwhelming public response to cover the costs of the dog’s care. No matter the choice, Orlando will end up in a safe and loving home.
“While his actions on Tuesday morning are receiving attention from around the world, Orlando has safely guided Cecil around New York City for the last eight years – a truly remarkable feat,” said Michelle Brier, Guiding Eyes’ Director of Marketing and Communications. “We’re so glad that Cecil and Orlando are both okay, and we’re incredibly proud of this team.”
While contributions are no longer needed to assist Orlando, those who have offered donations are encouraged to consider supporting the ongoing mission of Guiding Eyes and their 1,000 active guide dog teams. For more information, visit: https://guidingeyes.mylegacygift.org/donor-advised-funds.
UPDATE 12/18, 9:30PM EST – We’re grateful to report that Cecil Williams and Guiding Eyes dog Orlando are both doing well this evening. Although Cecil initially planned to retire Orlando with his puppy raisers, he’s now considering keeping him as his pet. No matter the choice, Orlando will end up in a safe and loving home.
While contributions are no longer needed to assist Orlando, we hope that all who have offered donations might consider supporting the ongoing mission of Guiding Eyes and our 1,000 active guide dog teams. You can make a donation here.
If you’re interested in learning more, you can watch today’s press conference. Please note that the sound becomes audible at 1:40.
We’re so very proud of this team.
12/18, 10:30AM EST – Thank you for your overwhelming outreach of concern and well wishes for our Guiding Eyes graduate Cecil Williams and Guiding Eyes dog Orlando. Our Director of Training, Kathy Zubrycki has reached out to Cecil. “Our immediate concern is for the safety and well-being of the team – Cecil and Guiding Eyes Orlando. We have offered our continued support and look forward to working with him as he retires Orlando and begins to work with his new Guiding Eyes dog.” We recognize everyone’s concern about Orlando’s future: whether he stays with Cecil or goes back to the loving home of his puppy raiser, please know he will be honored like the hero he is.
Guiding Eyes has a fund that supports their working dogs and a team of veterinarians to ensure their health and care. To give to the Graduate Assistance Fund and help Cecil and others like him care for their working dogs, please follow the link above.