Pet Therapy Dogs and Their Owners Honored as Volunteers of the Year at McLeod


McLeod Regional Medical Center named Anna Cusack and her dog, Dixie, and David Moore and his dog, Bug, as the Volunteers of the Year for 2018. The announcement was made during the annual McLeod Volunteer Recognition Luncheon held January 17, 2019 at the Hellenic Center.

Cusack and Moore and their pets are the 31st recipient of the McLeod Volunteer of the Year award. Cusack and Dixie have donated more than 3,180 hours visiting patients, families and staff. These hours also include Cusack’s time crocheting lap robes for patients. Moore and his retired dog, Bentley, and now Bug have contributed nearly 1,100 hours during their visits to the hospital. These owners and pets have been volunteering at McLeod for nearly five years.

In presenting the awards to Cusack and Moore, Linda Boone, Director of Volunteer Services for McLeod, said, “Not many Mondays or Fridays go by that we don’t receive a call from someone requesting a visit from our sweet therapy dogs. I have seen firsthand the difference these pets can make in the recovery of a patient that needs a little sunshine to brighten their day. Often, they bring smiles when times are very difficult.”

Boone added that the medical center now has six therapy dogs because of the strong foundation this team laid and the hospital hopes to continue adding more therapy dogs.

In addition to the Volunteer of the Year announcement, Bettina Buie was recognized with the High Hour Honor for volunteering more than 2,022 hours in 2018.

Nearly 250 volunteers who contribute outstanding service to McLeod Regional Medical Center were honored during the luncheon. All total these volunteers and the hospital’s 85 summer junior volunteers contributed more than 45,000 hours to the medical center in 2018. During the luncheon, certificates and pins were presented to the volunteers in attendance who have worked more than 300 hours and the program recognized all those with more than 50 hours of service.

McLeod Regional Medical Center honors its volunteers annually by presenting service awards to recognize their special efforts and outstanding contributions.