Lieutenant Colonel Kathy Champion’s Angel

Cathy Salustri

Lieutenant Colonel Kathy Champion’s Angel

Just before the fundraising dinner at the Peninsula Inn Saturday night, Gulfport veteran Kathy Champion relaxes with her guide dog, Angel. Lieutenant Colonel Champion served 27 years in the Army and survived seven IED (Improvised Explosive Device) blasts, only to return home and have her sight stolen by a virus she caught in Iraq.

Today, she gets by with the help of her guide dog, Angel, who came from Southeastern Guide Dogs’ “Paws for Patriots.”

“I can’t imagine trusting my life to another dog,” she said of her furry companion.

The post-parade dinner, which packed the Peninsula’s courtyard and back deck, raised money for VetSports wounded vets organization.