Friday, 14 December 2018
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Annual event honors military, benefits service dog organization

GP as a puppy during training.

A few short years ago, a group of Grosse Pointe organizations and individuals pooled their resources to sponsor a service dog. The German shepherd, appropriately named GP, went through rigorous training to become the companion of a veteran with post-traumatic stress disorder.

During an event 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 22, GP and his handler, Marty Baird, will be among five recently paired teams who will be recognized.

The annual Celebrate Michigan’s Military event, organized by Grosse Pointe Farms resident Mary Lamparter, takes place at DC3S, 7205 Sterling Ponds, Sterling Heights. Proceeds from the evening benefit Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs, the Florida-based organization where GP was trained.

“Four years ago, Celebrate Michigan’s Military selected Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs as the recipient of money raised from the event,” Lamparter said. “Sponsors have increased every year since and funds raised have gone from around $45,000 the first year to well over $150,000 last year and is on track for over that this year.”

Lamparter said not only is the defense community a heavy supporter of the event, but many Grosse Pointers have stepped up as well.

GP recently was paired with veteran Marty Baird.

“Since it takes the biggest part of two years to train a dog, a number of teams have now been paired as a result of money raised for the past three years,” Lamparter said. “Five of those dogs and their veterans will be present on Sept. 22 to participate in a ‘Passing of the Leash’ ceremony. This ceremony will recognize those companies and/or individuals whose financial contributions made the training of these dogs possible. GP, the dog sponsored by the Grosse Pointe Board of Realtors and the Grosse Pointe War Memorial, and his veteran, Marty, will be one of the five.”

The event, which includes a strolling dinner catered by Andiamo, is presented by AUSA Arsenal of Democracy Chapter, Women in Defense-Michigan and National Defense Industrial Association.

Tickets are $125 and are tax deductible. For more information, call Lamparter at (586) 567-1150 or email

— Jody McVeigh


The Bark Box

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