Planes, pilots, and puppies sprinkled with compassion and love for “all” animals spells PILOTS N PAWS RESCUE


If you’re reading this because you read IF THEY COULD FLY and couldn’t wait for the ending – good for you!

If you haven’t – go back, we’ll wait for you, you’ll want to read that post first!


Flying The Boys in Richards plane, I will admit, would have been “grand.” But you know – the “mini-van” ride was really nice. We arrived on time, only to find out the planes were running a little behind schedule due to some weather pattern changes in GA. That left  my “dynamic doodle duo” the only act around for the next few hours. Not a big problem, they love to entertain…


Harley, holding court

Leo found a buddy to play with him and “Wilson”


Leo will always find anipals to play ball with him

At first I thought Harley was seeking shade by hovering under the tables…


I looked all over for him – initially

But after observing him for a few minutes, I caught on. Can we say “attention seeker?


He has no shame in his game

Although I am a columnist for Pam Wahl (editor of The Virginia Maryland Dog Magazine), she’d never met The Boys. Fast and furious furrends are they now…


Another Doodle Fan

It was unusually hot that day, and the airfield can intensify that heat tremendously. With additional time on our hands, we jumped back into the “mini-van” to explore the town, and enjoy a little air conditioning. The planes were running almost three hours behind.

We found a body of water, it was a little cooler and very serene…


I was holding my breath while we were taking this photo

Was I afraid they might decide on a whim to jump in? You betcha…


Why can’t Harley just sit down?

We got back right before the planes started to fill the sky. The excitement could be heard in the chatter amongst everyone. Leashes were handed out to those going out to meet the planes. Those assigned to the grill were making sure the hot-dogs and burgers were wrapped and ready for an easy and quick “pick-up” by the pilots.

Having spent time with these wonderful people who give so much of their lives to this organization, I was eager with anticipation yet I had no “real” clue what I was about to witness let alone feel.

And then it happened!

The first plane was on the ground…


First team headed to get the pups

I waited and watched as the pilot got out and the first crate was opened…


Right about now I realized my heart was racing


Imagine, the day before, this dog was sitting in a kill shelter. He had no chance of adoption and his life was hours away from ending…



Now thanks to a woman (co-founder Debi Boies) with a vision, pilots with huge hearts and thousands of people wanting to make a difference, this little fella was walking towards me with a whole new life ahead of him…



The rest of the day was just like that. Amazing, take a look:

As if they knew this was a day about “other dogs” and not them, Harley & Leo remained still, allowing the pups to have all the attention they wanted…


Hanging back, and watching it all from under the umbrella

The rest of the day, planes landed, pilots ate, while pups were given water, hugs, kisses, and love. It all lasted about 10-15 minutes, and they were back up in the sky in no time to finish the last leg of their journey to their “forever homes”...


Taxiing on the runway

When we left the airfield for the last time that afternoon, there was silence for many miles. Either no one knew what to say or perhaps we just didn’t want to talk at all.

The experience had been like a movie, something I might have caught on the Hallmark Channel while changing channels. One of those movies that you’d rather watch alone so no one catches you wiping away a tear from time to time.

God Bless “everyone” who participated in “anyway” with “Operation Special Delivery.”

To Nick and his crew in the West Point VA area – The Boys and I salute you for a job well done…


From left to right: A volunteer, Pam, and Nick

If you’d like to read and learn more about PILOTS N PAWS please visit their website at: pilotsnpaws.org


As always, thanks so much for reading, and share both stories with people who love pups and planes…

  • Pam
    October 11, 2013

    Oh my gosh Cathy this is FABULOUS!!!! The slide show – I have no words. I started to get those feelings all over again. The same ones that I had that day. Full of emotion. So happy for all of those wonderful animals, but sad not knowing what they may have been through prior to this rescue. However, they are safe now which is all that matters. Pilots N Paws – ROCK!!!! And, thank YOU and “The Boys” for sharing this story within your blog, as well as taking the time to travel to West Point.

    • Cathy Bennett
      October 12, 2013

      THANKS TO YOU PAM – It was an honor to be there and witness this myself.

  • Jen@MyBrownNewfies
    October 11, 2013

    How wonderful that you got to experience such greatness! I would of been crying happy tears all day long!

    • Cathy Bennett
      October 12, 2013

      Hey Jen –
      It was one of those days, and yes it was quite emotional. Thanks for reading

  • Tiffany
    October 11, 2013

    What an amazing story. Drying my eyes now.

    • Cathy Bennett
      October 12, 2013

      It was one of those moments for sure.

  • Pam calhoun
    October 11, 2013

    You did a wonderful job video !i hope u join us again next year

    • Cathy Bennett
      October 12, 2013

      Thanks Pam, I would love to bring The Boys next year, it was my pleasure. Thanks for having us.

  • Pam calhoun
    October 11, 2013

    You did an awesome job with the pictures and video! Hope to see you and the boys next year.

    • Cathy Bennett
      October 12, 2013

      Thanks so much, we loved it!

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