Graduating with HONOR: Service dog sponsored by Veterans employee network completes training

Community News


It’s graduation season and one recent graduate has an important job ahead of him. Diesel, a hound mix, completed training at the K9s For Warriors facility in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, and was matched with a military veteran. Diesel was sponsored and named by Marathon Petroleum’s HONOR Veterans employee network chapter in Findlay, Ohio.

To date, K9s For Warriors reports more than 720 service dogs have been paired with military veterans suffering from PTSD, traumatic brain injury and/or military trauma.

“We felt inspired to give back to an organization that helps prevent suicide among service members and veterans,” said Zac Driskell, MPC Corporate Security, Infantry Officer in the U.S. Army, and member of HONOR. “I had a soldier in my battalion who died by suicide last year; and sadly, other members of HONOR have had similar situations. Everyone thinks this is a valuable cause, and we’re proud to support it.”

“K9s For Warriors has the privilege every day to see the impact a Service Dog has on a veteran.”

Since 2019, Marathon Petroleum has given more than $130,000 to K9s For Warriors through employee donations, company match and corporate donations. The Findlay HONOR chapter has sponsored several dogs in the K9s For Warriors training program. A dog named Findlay graduated earlier this year. A dog named Liberty is currently undergoing service dog training at the new K9s For Warriors training facility in San Antonio, Texas. She’ll be matched with a veteran upon completion of the program.

“Through donations from generous sponsors like Marathon Petroleum, we can provide Service Dogs at no cost to the veterans struggling from invisible wounds of war,” said Stephanie Vogt with K9s For Warriors. “K9s For Warriors has the privilege every day to see the impact a Service Dog has on a veteran. With a battle buddy by their side, the veteran returns to a life of dignity and independence.”