Iota-Tau Chapter (St. John’s) brings puppies to Marillac

EDITORS NOTE: The excerpt below originally ran in an article on the St. John’s University online publication, The Torch. To read the article in its entirety, please click here

Emphasizing the importance of service dogs for Veterans suffering with PTSD, brothers of Sigma Pi Fraternity held their annual Sigma Puppies event in Marillac Terrace on Oct. 27.

“What Sigma Puppies is, is basically the Sigma Pi Fraternity here [bringing] out numerous service dogs as well as their Veteran handlers just for a day of Awareness for PTSD and just numbers that are just so crazy to us that we want to help beat,” Andrew Calvano said.

Calvano serves as the Inter-Fraternal Council President and Chair of Altruistic Campus Experience (ACE).

ACE is a service project designed and implemented by Sigma Pi Fraternity to support St. John’s Student Veterans Association.

The event was held with eight service dogs from 12-3 p.m. Each dog has directly impacted their handlers life. Sigma Pi received over $1,400 in donations according to St. John’s Division of Student Affairs.

The first puppy that began the event was Kimba, a two-year-old black lab, who attracted a lot of attention with her friendly demeanor and positive energy.

“22 veterans commit suicide a day and millions and millions suffer from PTSD,” said Calvano. “We truly believe that service dogs and the compassion and energy they show towards their handlers…that a four-legged animal can truly change a veterans life for the better and help them better cope into reality.”

St. John’s students Mel Sheehan and Jenique Dubois appreciated Sigma Puppies.