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Blogs and Stories

July 10, 2020
Amy Wade Carotenuto

Tom and Melissa

This weeks article is a bit of a “Where Are They Now” episode.

If you have been a friend of the Flagler Humane Society for any length of time you probably know Tom and Melissa Rock. Tom and Melissa began working at Flagler Humane Society in 2011.

Tom managed our thrift store. With Tom‘s retail background, he grew the store to be so successful that a large part of our income at FHS is from thrift store sales. The thrift store is part of the reason that we are able to take such good care of our animals and able to help animals even outside of the shelter.

Melissa was our operations manager. She juggled many, many duties. Most were in her job description, but some, like making birthday cakes for every single staff member on their birthday, were not.

In April 2017 Tom and Melissa left FHS and begin working as contractors on assignments with the American Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) providing transport for animals from less fortunate shelters around the country to other shelters that have more resources and higher adoption rates. This work was perfect for Tom and Melissa. Not only are they saving lives, but Tom and Melissa love to travel and they are one of the very few couples I know that is happy spending 24 hours a day together.

Tom and Melissa continue to volunteer at FHS when they are in town. Most recently, Tom and Melissa helped us with a sweet little Pekingese that had been left at the shelter.

Last week, a man was seen chaining the little dog to our park bench out front. We got the dog inside and gave him the name Samuel. It was obvious that Samuel was older and had pretty serious health issues. His breathing was labored and he tired easily. We took him to have x-rays done which revealed an enlarged heart. Samuel would need to be on heart medication for the rest of his life. This condition, coupled with his age would make finding him an adopter challenging.

A group near Panama City that helps only Pekingese was contacted. They would take him and help him get the medical care that he needed if we could get him to them. Tom and Melissa to the rescue. They volunteered on their day off, and drove him all the way to Panama City where he is already settling in nicely in his new foster home with a volunteer who specializes in animals with special needs.

Thank you Tom and Melissa!