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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Bob Schneider's contribution

Last weekend Bob Schneider was killed in an ATV accident outside Yakima. Bob was a well known and well liked Yakima businessman and outdoor sportsman. Between his businesses, his contributions to groups like Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, Mule Deer Foundation and many others, and his wife Patti's mounted drill team activities, Bob and Patti interfaced with just about everyone in the community.

Not until I read his obituary, however, did I learn of his great contribution to Yakima residents with pets.

Upon moving to Yakima in the mid-1970s, Bob and Patti looked for a rental home that would accept children and/or pets, and quickly identified the need for more housing for people in these situations. They began to buy up rental homes and offer them as pet-friendly. This alone elevates Bob to hero status in my book. If you've ever had to search for a decent place for you and your dog or cat to live, you know the discrimination and total frustration experienced by so many home-hunting folks every day.

You may have heard the following story before...no doubt Bob Schneider had...but it bears repeating as we remember someone who truly appreciated the value of pets in our lives:

A man wrote a letter to a small hotel in a Midwest town he planned to visit on his vacation. He wrote:"I would very much like to bring my dog with me. He is well-groomed and very well behaved. Would you be willing to permit me to keep him in my room with me at night?"

An immediate reply came from the hotel owner, who said, "I've been operating this hotel for many years. In all that time, I've never had a dog steal towels, bedclothes, silverware or pictures off the walls. I've never had to evict a dog in the middle of the night for being drunk and disorderly. And I've never had a dog run out on a hotel bill. Yes, indeed, your dog is welcome at my hotel. And, if your dog will vouch for you, you're welcome to stay here, too."

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