Producer Sam Simon may best be known for co-creating the popular show The Simpsons along with Matt Groening and James L. Brooks. What many people don’t realize, though, is that Simon is an animal advocate. And that he is dying from cancer.
After being diagnosed with terminal colon cancer in 2012, Simon, 58, announced that he would be donating a large portion of his vast fortune to animal charities.
He told NBC News ‘My new hobby in the twilight of my life, my rich man’s hobby, I should say, is liberating animals from abusive situations such as roadside zoos and circuses.’
In 2007, Simon had already founded a charity, Sam Simon Foundation, which trains shelter dogs to become service dogs for veterans and hearing dogs for people who are deaf or hard of hearing. The foundation also provides a free mobile spay and neutering service for low-income pet owners and free operations for sick dogs. His charity does not rely on public donations, but is self-funded.
Simon recently revealed, according to NBC News, that he secretly paid for an injured horse to be retired from competitive racing. Simon reportedly paid $60,000 to save Valediction, a thoroughbred racehorse.
PETA president Ingrid Newkirk had called Simon, informing him of PETA’s investigation of Valediction’s trainer. The undercover investigation lasted more than four months, and led to an expose on cruelty to racehorses.
And now, thanks to Simon, Valediction has retired and lives on a farm in Virginia.
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