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2 selfless givers receive national Hero awards

American Humane and Zoetis honor a North Carolina veterinarian and a Georgia veterinary nurse.

2 selfless givers receive national Hero awards
Hero Veterinarian Dr. Terry Morris, left, and Hero Veterinary Nurse Angel Martin

A North Carolina veterinarian who started a non-profit organization that matches military veterans with service, therapeutic and emotional support dogs has won the 2019 American Humane Hero Veterinarian award.

Terry Morris, DVM, MS, Ph.D., was honored in Beverly Hills, California, during a celebration that also saw Angel Martin, RVT, receive the 2019 Hero Veterinary Nurse award.

Dr. Morris founded Vets to Vets United, a Durham, North Carolina, group, in honor of her late father, a U.S. Air Force captain.

“Because of Vets to Vets United, Dr. Morris has been able to improve veterans’ lives by providing companionship and/or help with a mental or physical disability in addition to saving many dogs facing euthanasia by adopting the animal from a local animal shelter,” award sponsor Zoetis Inc. stated. “Dr. Morris continues to improve the lives of all those she helps, human and animal alike.”

Martin, a veterinary nurse at Russell Ridge Animal Hospital in Lawrenceville, Georgia, plays a key role in the practice’s CARE Fund, which pays for medical care for animals in need. According to Zoetis, Martin also “has helped organize an annual 5K event to grow contributions for the CARE Fund, hosted a pet pictures with Santa event and maintained the clinic’s active social media presence.”

“Dr. Morris and Angel have provided lifesaving services to many animals, and their inspiring work continues to strengthen the powerful human-animal bond between pets and the families who love them,” said Tara Bidgood, DVM, Ph.D., DACVCP, executive director of veterinary professional services at Zoetis Petcare.

The ninth annual Hero Awards, which will be broadcast Oct. 21 on the Hallmark Channel, also honored two dogs in Zoetis-sponsored categories. They are:

  • Sergeant Yeager, representing military dogs, a 13-year-old black Lab who served three tours with the U.S. Marine Corps in Iraq and Afghanistan. An improvised explosive detection dog, he suffered shrapnel wounds in a 2012 explosion. Today, he lives in North Carolina.
  • Dax, representing the law enforcement/arson dog category, a 4-year-old German shepherd assigned to the Lake County, Illinois, Sheriff’s Office. He is credited with tracking and apprehending more than 70 criminal suspects.