13 seeded American tennis star John Isner has vowed to give 20% of his $113,000 US Open winnings to America’s VetDogs, a non-profit organization that trains service dogs for disabled veterans, crediting his mother Karen with coming up with the idea.
“I think it’s a very worthy cause, given that these dogs save our soldiers’ lives, and, in turn, save American lives,” stated Isner.
John Isner was born April 26, 1985 in Greensboro, NC, and began playing tennis at the Carolina Tennis Academy at the age of 9. He later played for four years at University of Georgia, GA, where he earned All-American honors every season from 2004-2007, and is the school’s all-time leader in singles and doubles wins.
Since turning pro in 2007, John has been recognized as “one of the future stars of American tennis.”
“I was quite surprised, said America’’s VetDogs chief executive Wells Jones. “We are very grateful for his generosity.”
In turn, Isner, a self-proclaimed dog lover, stated that he felt bad that he didn’t advance further in the tournament so that he could give more. He was defeated in the third round at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Fresh Meadows, NY by Phillipp Kohlschreiber of Germany.
Originally part of the Guide Dog Foundation for the Blind in 2003, Vet Dogs became an independent organization three years later, working primarily with labs, golden retrievers and mixtures of the two. The dogs are trained to perform a number of tasks, including helping amputees get in and out of their wheelchairs, opening doors and picking up dropped items. In addition VetDogs has trained military therapy dogs to give comfort to patients at the Northport Veterans Affairs Medical Center on Long Island, as the Eisenhower Medical Center in Ft. Gordon, GA and the Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington DC.
To date, the group has placed 300 dogs with disabled veterans, and hopes to be able to provide 100 more to soldiers currently on their waiting list To learn more contact America's VetDogs
371 East Jericho Tpk, Smithtown, NY 11787-2976, 631-930-9090/1-866-838-3647, or e-mail them at firstname.lastname@example.org