Those words penned by Ace Collins in Service Tails explain how that love—the unconditional love of a dog for its owner and the owner’s love for the dog—turn darkness into light. Brian Tracy said, “The greatest gift that you can give to others is the gift of unconditional love.” The dogs we come to know in these “tails” are experts in giving that gift. And Collins relates their tales in a style only one who has known a dog’s unconditional love could employ.
Collins begins this book of “tails” with the story of how service dogs came to the United States. Morris Frank was a bright and talented young man from a well-to-do family. When he was six, he lost the sight in his right eye when he collided with a tree branch while horseback riding. Then, during a boxing match ten years later, an unfortunate punch cost him the sight in the left. Suddenly, he was totally blind. Because of his family’s wealth, he was able to attend prep school and college by employing readers to vocalize his textbooks. Still, even with a cane to aid him in getting around, he was limited in what he could do. Listening one evening to his father reading an article about service dogs from the Saturday Evening Post, he realized if the story was true, he could once again become mobile. How he journeyed to Switzerland to the training school, gained a dog he named Buddy, and brought the concept back to the States is a tale of its own.
To the blind, to the elderly, to the physically disabled, to an Alzheimer’s affected woman, service dogs gave the gifts of freedom and unconditional love. Trained to guide their afflicted owners around campuses and towns and even on extreme hiking trails, these dogs lived out their love. Once in harness, they were all business; unharnessed, they were playful and somewhat mischievous pets. Their owners experienced and returned the love and became better for it.
You’ll love the tales of all these tails—and how they served the people they loved—unconditionally.
Ace Collins is a prolific writer whose interests span many areas. A World War II buff, he’s penned a series, In the President’s Service, for Elk Lake Publishing that now stretches to eleven books, with more to follow. He writes about dogs and music and Christmas and murder and mayhem. He’s published over seventy books for over twenty-five publishers that have sold more than two and a half million copies and won major awards. He speaks frequently across the country and has appeared on many national television shows. Ace and his wife, Kathy, live in Arkansas, where he plays his guitar for inspiration and restores classic cars. Ace Collins.com is the place to go to learn more.
Ace Collins gave me a copy of Service Tails as an unconditional gift. My pleasure is to write this review of the book.