The Amazin’ Mets Foundation’s first service dog, Shea, was paired with former NYPD first responder Richie Carter in a pregame ceremony at Citi Field on September 28
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FLUSHING, N.Y., October 4, 2023 – America’s VetDogs, a New York-based national nonprofit that provides specially trained service dogs to veterans and first responders with disabilities, has officially paired the Amazin’ Mets Foundation’s first service dog, Shea, with NYPD first responder Richie Carter in a pregame ceremony at Citi Field on September 28.
“Being placed with Shea at Citi Field was one of the greatest moments of my life with so many emotions and doesn’t compare to anything I have ever been a part of,” said Carter. “I truly want to thank the New York Mets for helping raise Shea and welcoming me and my family with open arms into the Mets’ organization. Shea is going to change my life.”
Carter dedicated 20 years of his life to serving in the NYPD, where he spent over 250 grueling hours at Ground Zero as a first responder during the tragic events of 9/11. Beyond his dedicated service, Carter is a passionate baseball enthusiast and a lifelong Mets fan. Carter’s passion for baseball continued to grow throughout his life as he helped lead his NYPD softball team to multiple championship victories, standing tall as the captain behind the plate.
“We are proud that the Amazin’ Mets Foundation’s first service dog, Shea, has been paired with former NYPD officer and 9/11 first responder Richie Carter,” said Alex Cohen, President of the Amazin’ Mets Foundation and New York Mets Owner. “Service dogs can provide companionship, hope, joy, and a life-changing experience. It’s our honor to partner with America’s VetDogs and support our veterans and first responders.”
The New York Mets were the first-ever MLB team to raise a future service dog with Shea. The Amazin’ Mets Foundation recently sponsored their second service dog, Seaver, who like Shea, will be paired with a U.S. Veteran or first responder with disabilities.
“America's VetDogs takes pride in pairing Shea with former NYPD officer Richie,” said John Miller president and CEO of America’s VetDogs. “The Amazin' Mets Foundation and the New York Mets played a fundamental role in providing invaluable support for Shea's upbringing and training. The unwavering dedication of everyone in the Mets' front office, the Amazin' Mets Foundation, and Alex Cohen helped to make this possible.”
Seaver is currently undergoing basic training and socialization with the Amazin’ Mets Foundation staff and New York Mets players and fans before returning to America’s VetDogs campus in Smithtown, N.Y. for formal training.
For more information on America’s VetDogs and ways to get involved, please visit VetDogs.org.
About America’s VetDogs
For 20 years, America’s VetDogs (www.VetDogs.org) has trained and placed guide and service dogs to provide independence, enhanced mobility, and companionship to veterans with disabilities from all eras. In 2015, VetDogs opened its programs to first responders, including fire, police, and emergency medical personnel. America’s VetDogs is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization founded by the Guide Dog Foundation and serves clients from across the United States. VetDogs relies on contributions from generous individuals, corporations, service clubs, and foundations to fund its mission to help those who have served our country live with dignity and independence. It costs over $50,000 to breed, raise, train, and place one assistance dog, but America’s VetDogs provides its services completely free of charge to the individual. America’s VetDogs has been accredited by both the International Guide Dog Federation and Assistance Dogs International.
About the Amazin’ Mets Foundation
The Amazin’ Mets Foundation is the philanthropic arm of the New York Mets. The Foundation is committed to providing needed services and opportunities to children, families, and underserved groups. Since its inception in 2021, the Amazin’ Mets Foundation has funded over $6.2 million in grants to over 100 organizations in its community, including the communities surrounding affiliate teams. Learn more at amazinmetsfoundation.org.