Huber Heights family raises money to buy daughter a service dog

Family raises money to buy daughter service dog (WDTN PhotoMaytal Levi)

HUBER HEIGHTS, Ohio (WDTN) – The Norris family was told one of their daughters would never be able to walk on her own.

10-year-old Tiffany Norris has defied the odds, not letting her cerebral palsy slow her down.

“There was some speculation that she would never be able to walk and be wheelchair bound. She has overcome so many obstacles,” said Terra Norris, Tiffany’s mother.

Her parents, twin brother and 12-year-old sister started fundraising in February hoping to buy her a service dog.

On Friday at Valley Forge Elementary School in Huber Heights, Tiffany got the surprise of a lifetime. Hundreds packed into the school’s gymnasium and watched as Tiffany found out her dream had come true, a service dog would soon be hers.

After two months $15,000 was raised for Tiffany to get her dog. Valley Forge Elementary school students raised $2,900 for their classmate. The rest came from people across the Miami Valley and the globe, as far as Africa. The last donation came in anonymously, getting them to their goal quicker than they thought possible.

“I didn’t know what to think. I was blown away that we’re actually going to get this dog and how good people are. I know it will help me to be more independent and I can have a normal life and it will help me get around and everything. It will be a big help,” said Tiffany.

Steven Norris, Tiffany’s father, wants his daughter to live a normal, independent life. A service dog can help her turn off lights and shut doors, things that are harder for Tiffany to do than most. Her mother says it will help preserve her energy for other daily tasks.

“For the money to be raised so quickly and the support that poured in from all over the place, that allowed this day to happen in this way, you can’t really put into words seeing that expression on your child’s face,” said Steven.

Now, the family of five is looking ahead to the future and their new four-legged edition.

Tiffany will get her dog in November of 2017 through 4 Paws for Ability. Each dog is trained to meet every individual’s needs. Terra says it’s possible Tiffany’s dog hasn’t been born yet.

For Tiffany updates join her Facebook group.

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