In 2012, Gary Verrazano lost his right arm and leg in an industrial accident when a piece of machinery fell on top of him. He was in the hospital for eight months.

About six months ago, he met ‘Halo,’ a black lab rescue who was trained thanks to Freedom Service Dogs.

“I like to do a lot of things, and Halo likes to do a lot of things as well and I went in and met her and we bonded the first day we met, and we’ve been together ever since,” Verrazano said.

Gary said after his accident, he needed some help ‘retrieving’ things, and that’s where 2-year-old Halo comes in handy. He said she also make him laugh.

Erin Conley, the Marketing and PR Director at Freedom Service Dogs, said the non-profit helps shelter dogs reach their potential.

“Freedom Service Dogs unleashes the potential of shelter dogs by transforming them into life changing assistance dogs for people in need,” Conley said. “We serve a variety of people with different disabilities.”

Conley said most of the dogs come from shelters, and the non-profit looks into whether or not they have what it takes to be a service dog.

A lot of times the dogs go to companion training, and then they’ll have additional custom training for the person who they are paired with.

Freedom Service Dogs is one of 2,300 non-profits featured on the Colorado Gives Day website. On December 5, you can donate to your favorite non-profit organization on Colorado Gives Day.