HARRISBURG, PA – AHEPA Power District #4 of Pennsylvania donated three Service Dogs for Warriors to AHEPA’s National Program serving veterans. The District currently leads all contributing AHEPA Districts across the USA in supporting the AHEPA National Service Dogs for Warriors Foundation with its donation for deserving veterans.
More information about the program is available online: https://ahepa-servicedogs.org/.
Alex Barlamas spearheaded the first drive during his tenure as District Governor and was able to partner with Cleon Kordistos the Supreme Governor at the time in raising the $15,000 needed to donate the service dog by District #4.
When asked about the motivation for the project, Barlamas said that he was emotionally moved by the virtuous nature and compassion toward these veterans who are truly in need of our support. The dog, named Filos, is the 14th on the list of the donated, graduated from training on January 23 of this year, and was matched with a veteran warrior named Steven. This was the goal for District #4 in 2018 to fulfill a veteran’s dream of companionship with a service dog.
Power District #4 of Pennsylvania is composed of 20 Chapters who have contributed mightily to this cause realizing the importance of serving needy veteran warriors who have been afflicted with PTSD and/or some physical calamity.
AHEPA District #4 donated three service dogs including Filos, shown here with veteran Steven, to the AHEPA National Service Dogs for Warriors Program. (Photo: Courtesy of AHEPA)
In 2019, the second dog and the 29th on the list, is named Gabriel in honor of the departed Past Supreme President George Gabriel who hailed from the Allentown Chapter #60 area. This fundraising operation for District #4 was chaired by then-District Governor Charles Mackenzie of Allentown Chapter #60. This dog is yet to be matched with a deserving warrior.
In 2020, the third dog, 44th on the list and most recent is named Uncle Buck in honor of a departed member of Chapter #64 in Harrisburg, PA, John Sempeles. Past District Marshal Dr. Michael Billys spearheaded this effort to raise $15,000 both in his chapter and for the district. His home Chapter #64 was able to contribute $6,000 of the total, meeting the challenge set forth by DG Charles Mackenzie to lead the charge.
More information about AHEPA’s National Service Dogs for Warriors Program is available online: https://ahepa.org/programs/veterans/.