Veteran Organization Drops Everything to Help Fort Myers Residents in Need

by Amy Myers
Photo by GIORGIO VIERA/AFP via Getty Images

In the aftermath of Hurricane Ian, many selfless individuals have offered their services to aid the residents that are struggling with the wreckage. Among those people is Paws of War, a non-profit veteran organization that aims to rescue animals in need while also supporting former military members struggling with a variety of post-service conditions.

Naturally, this group wanted to pitch in where they could in Florida to assist during the clean-up and recovery of one of the largest storms in U.S. history. Currently, Paws of War members are lending a hand to the people and animals in Fort Myers.

“This storm has been catastrophic in some areas of Florida, and we are ready to do all we can to help,” said Mike Kilano, a USMC veteran and outreach coordinator for Paws of War. “Our response team is ready to step in and help with rescues and supplies to those who need us but our main focus is on the large veteran population in Fort Myers and surrounding areas. We know what some of these veterans are going through right now especially those who feel like they lost everything.”

In preparation for the effort, veteran team members spent days loading up supplies and equipment to bring down to Florida. This included “everything from pet food, clean water, generators to life-saving equipment.”

They also made sure to pack a fair amount of other pet supplies to help the animals that became displaced during the storm. Paws of War’s current mission is to provide water, food and any assistance they can give to Fort Myers residents and their pets.

Veteran Organization Asks Public For Donations and Supplies

In particular, the veteran-run organization hopes to help fellow service members that were “at risk” before Hurricane Ian hit. This includes those with disabilities and medical conditions that put them in a more compromised state.

“Paws of War has a staging area set up at the American Legion Post 38, located at 1857 Jackson St. in Fort Myers,” the official press release stated. “They will also be working with veterans who were at risk prior to the hurricane, including those who were homeless. Many of them have medical conditions that require devices, including sleep apnea machines. They are providing generators and other assistance to veterans, many of whom live under the poverty level.”

While Paws of War is working hard to reach this population, they still need help from the public..

“We will do all we can, but we can’t do it alone,” added Kilano. “Those who would like to help are encouraged to donate. Any amount will help because the people and animals essentially need everything.”

For information on how to support and donate to the organization’s efforts, head here.