GREENTREE (KDKA) -- Three Pennsylvania residents with epilepsy received specially trained dogs Saturday thanks to a local foundation.
Vincent Mroz of Forest Hills, Cassie Hall of Monaca and Daniel Powell of Greensburg were the recipients of the 2016 Oscar Program, which helps to pay for the training of service dogs and match service animals with local residents who have seizures. These service dogs are able to sense when a seizure may occur and are able to get help.
"I know at least someone will be by my side if I ever have issues or problems," Mroz said. "Just to know that there's a guardian angel by me."
In 2014, the Epilepsy Foundation of Western/Central PA (EFWCP), with help from the Michael R. Zupancic Seizure Response Dog Endowment, started The Oscar Program. The program was made possible by a fund honoring Michael Zupancic, who died at the age of 46, and Michael's constant companion, his service dog Oscar.
"[Michael's parents] honor their son by providing these service animals to folks who need the assistance of the animals," EFWCP president Peggy Beem-Jelley said.
The training took place at the Crowne Plaza Hotel on Holiday Drive late Saturday morning. An additional six dogs and their owners were re-certified.
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