Calgary volunteer looking forward to reliving Paralympic magic in Pyeongchang
Veteran lawyer Bob Fenton counts on an important partner every day when he goes to work at Calgary Police Service headquarters.
Visually impaired since birth, Fenton relies on his guide dog Taryn to help him get around, from meetings within the building and around the city.
Fenton represents the service on all kinds of legal matters, sometimes getting on a plane with Taryn to conduct business in other parts of Canada.
Now, Fenton is heading to South Korea to volunteer his services as legal counsel for Canada’s athletes at the 2018 Paralympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang.
It’s familiar territory for Fenton, as he was a Paralympian himself in 1984.
“I was a swimmer on the Canadian team, breaststroke and freestyle,” Fenton said.
“I remember the opening ceremonies, this overwhelming feeling going into the stadium. It was a very, very emotional experience.”
He’s looking forward to more magic moments in Pyeongchang.
“The alpine events I like, because I skied myself.”
Police Chief Roger Chaffin said he’s proud to see Fenton volunteering at the Paralympics.
“It’s exciting. Good for you,” he told Fenton on Wednesday. “I think it’ll be the trip of a lifetime.”
But it’s a trip that Taryn won’t be part of – the long flights to South Korea would be too much for her, so Fenton’s making other arrangements.
“I will have my white cane with me and I’ll also have a guide,” Fenton said.
So Taryn gets a bit of a holiday and a chance to have some fun of her own.
“She’s very playful,” Fenton said. “Dog tussles between her and our Portuguese water dog at home can get quite boisterous.”
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