Local nonprofit pairs up service dogs with veterans

The late president's faithful service dog, Sully, will continue to serve veterans.

Sully traveled with the Bush family to DC for his master's funeral. America's Vetdogs, who trained the yellow Labrador retriever, said he will join the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda.

One local non-profit is dedicated to training service animals like Sully.

Carrie Caposello and her wife, Melissa Caposello, co-founded DFW Canines for Veterans in 2001 after rescuing Doberman Isis from a shelter and training her to become a service dog. Melissa has muscular dystrophy and literally leans on Isis for stability.

“What a better way to give thanks to these people that went out and risked their lives for everything for us so we didn’t have to,” said Carrie said.

Carrie’s father, Fred Caposello, is a Vietnam veteran. The couple’s son is an active duty Marine. Together, they paired their love for service dogs and appreciation for veterans to create their nonprofit, and have been told they have saved both dog lives and human lives because of it.

“We pull 90 percent of our dogs from kill shelters,” Carrie explained.

The Caposellos have seen the now famous photo of Sully and aren’t at all surprised by man’s best friend’s devotion.

“I saw that picture of that dog this morning and had tears rolling down my face. That dog is every bit as much of a hero as President Bush was,” Carrie said. “To see that is more powerful than words can describe.”

Sully is named after former airline pilot Chelsey “sully” Sullenberger from Denison, Texas, who successfully landed the damaged passenger jet in the Hudson River in 2009.

Former President George W. Bush said on Instagram that Sully will now go to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center to continue as a service dog to help other veterans.