‘They Are Going on to Bigger and Better Things’

The first time she saw Grace’s photo, Megan Walsh was smitten. And she knew she’d found what she and her husband, Justin, had been looking for—a way to give back to the veteran community as a family.

Fostering service dogs in training also seemed like a way to honor Justin’s father, who served in the Navy and passed away in February from Alzheimer’s. “He had a whole album of his service. Even as he was losing his memory, he could remember his time in the Navy,” Megan says.

Their daughters, ages 13, 11, and 8, also loved welcoming a dog into their home. “Our 8-year-old has been really responsible for her training. She was afraid of dogs.  It was almost like Grace could sense it. Now she loves dogs,” Justin says.

As for having to one day say goodbye, Justin and Megan say they’ve talked about that. “We told the girls it’s OK to feel sad when the dogs leave, but you’re doing the right thing. This is what we signed up for,” Justin says. “They understand they are going on to bigger and better things.”