Blind man who fell on subway tracks thanks guide dog, gets to keep him as pet!!
Cecil Williams, who fell into the path of an oncoming A train at the 125th St. station on Tuesday, tearfully thanked Orlando, the guide dog who stuck by him after the two fell onto the tracks. Thanks to donations, Williams will be able to keep Orlando, having thought he would have to give the dog up after he retired from service because he couldn’t afford to keep both him and another guide dog.
Cecil Williams’ guide dog Orlando sits besides him during a press conference at St. Luke’s Hospital on Tuesday.
A blind man who tumbled off a subway platform and into the path of an oncoming train gave an emotional thank you Wednesday to the loyal guide dog who stayed by his side throughout the terrifying ordeal.
Cecil Williams, 61, his eyes shielded by dark glasses, had tears rolling down his cheeks as he sang the praises of his “best buddy” at a press conference inside St. Luke’s Hospital in midtown.
‘Guide dogs serve a purpose, and they are very loyal and they are very good,’ Williams (left) said of Orlando.
“Guide dogs serve a purpose, and they are very loyal and they are very good,” said Williams, as he fought to keep his voice steady.
“(Orlando) is always there for me, he drives me through the sidewalks, he gets me across the streets, he’s always looking out for me, that’s his job,” he said.
Cecil Williams pets his guide dog Orlando. Williams will be allowed to keep the dog after he retires from service.
Williams, who lost his sight in 1995, doesn’t remember much of the horrifying incident Tuesday at Harlem’s 125th St. subway station, where he was waiting with Orlando to take the A train.
Williams tears up recounting the story of how his guide dog Orlando stayed by his side after he fell into the path of an oncoming train.
“I fainted, I lost consciousness and he was trying to pull me back. I guess I fell over and he fell over with me,” said Williams.
Even as an A train roared into the station, bearing down on the defenseless dog huddled in front of its master, Orlando didn’t flinch.
Emergency workers respond to the A train platform at the 125th St. station, where Cecil Williams and his guide dog Orlando fell onto the tracks
When his master fully regained his faculties, they were both lying in a subway trough. Nearly two subway cars had passed over their heads and first responders were rushing to extricate them.
“He stayed down there with me, he was licking my face. He was there for me,” the emotional dog owner said.
Pals for life! Cecil Williams pets his guide dog Orlando in his hospital bed following a fall onto subway tracks from the platform on Tuesday.
Both survived with only scratches and will be going home Thursday, doctors said.
Adding to the good news, a spokeswoman from Guiding Eyes for The Blind – the nonprofit that trained Orlando and matched him to Williams in 2006 – said they’d received enough donations to keep the now famous duo together.
Williams, who had planned to retire the 10-year-old Orlando in the near future, had hoped to keep his companion as a pet – but wasn’t sure he could afford both him and a replacement Seeing Eye dog.
Thanks to the many contributions sent to Guiding Eyes in honor of Orlando’s bravery, the two can now stay together, Williams said.
“Orlando has been working for eight years, he’s 77 years old, and now he can retire and be a pet. His medical coverage is taken care of as long as he lives and other things will be there for him too,” marveled Williams.
“I’d like to say thank you, but I’m looking for some more words to describe how it feels … it’s a blessing, a miracle,” he said.
God Above Sent His Holy Angels to Help Save this man and this GREAT DOG!! Praise Jesus Christ for His LOVE in Helping this man!!