DuchessLA loves to highlight charities and the people behind them. Today, we wanted to pay tribute to a wonderful human-being who committed her life to finding forever homes for pets in need, her name is Valerie Louie.
For 20 years, Ms. Louie volunteered her free time rescuing, fostering and adopting dogs. Her friends and family say she rescued over a thousand dogs. Ms. Louie volunteered her free time at Rocket Dog Rescue in Oakland, California. Ms. Louie was a powerhouse in the pet adoption world, hosting fundraisers and holding adoption events, touching the lives of hundreds upon thousands of people. In an interview with KPIX, an affiliate of CBS, friends of Ms.Louie describe her as “truly gifted, she could really connect with animals.”
Even during the COVID-19 pandemic, Louie took it upon herself to rescue 80 dogs. She worked hard to find them at shelters and then again to find the dogs forever homes.
We learned about one life in particular that was impacted by Ms. Louie, that of New York Times writer, Matt Richtel. Richtel adopted his dog, Uncle Mort and credits Louie for saving his life, “I first saw Uncle Mort, a tortured little soul, in the back of Ms. Louie’s Toyota RAV4 in early 2018,” he wrote in a moving tribute published by the Times and titled, She Saved Thousands of Best Friends. Then Covid-19 Killed Her. “Her specialty was rescuing the truly abandoned and broken pup, the abused, the blind, the deaf and the long in tooth,” said Richtel. Richtel, unsure if he should adopt a pet for his family, expressed his sentiments to Ms. Louie, to which she knew exactly how to respond. Ms. Louie spoke with Richtel and soon convinced him to give a dog a trial run. It is like Louie knew exactly the dog for Richtel and many other families she helped match with a dog. “Friends said she had a particular knack as matchmaker between dog and family,” wrote Richtel, “She would keep a mental log of the people seeking rescue dogs, and when the right fit came along, she would call with the good news.”
Not only was Ms. Louie selflessly devoted to bettering the life of dogs, she was also a single-mom and a nurse for over 32 years working at the Highland Hospital in Oakland. “There were times I knew she would be working till 10 o’ clock at night and we’d be looking for a dog that’s missing and here she’d come,” a close friend of Ms. Louie told CBS. Meg McAdam, who organized a GoFundMe page for Louie’s son, described her as , “an incredible mom,” “feisty and strong” and of course, “dedicated and hardworking.” McAdam’s writes, ” She had to deal with many, many challenges each day, but nurses do whatever is needed to care for our most vulnerable and Val was no exception.”
Sadly, on Tuesday, November 25, at 4:30 pm, Ms. Louie lost her battle to COVID-19, she was 60 years old.
Ms. Louie was a healthcare worker who committed her entire being to helping others, not only through her full-time job as a nurse but also as an animal welfare worker. Louie changed so many lives through her work and she matched thousands of dogs with loving humans. “I got my beloved corgi mix Gulliver from Valerie a decade ago. It’s impossible to forget her kindness,” wrote a donor of the GoFundMe page. “Valerie brought our beloved pup Sunny into our lives. Forever grateful to her,” wrote another donor. And like them, hundreds of others have taken to GoFundMe to express their gratitude towards Ms.Louie even sharing images of the dogs that she helped save.
Some have even expressed how incredibly inspired they are by her selfless actions:
“The world needs more people like Valerie. I got to know her through Rocket Dog Rescue and was so inspired by her patience, kindness, sense of humor, and selflessness. I can’t think of a person more full of life. She helped so many people and animals. I’m grateful to Ms. McAdams for putting this together and I wish Andrew the very best for his future. Since he is Val’s son I know he will do great things. She was incredibly proud of him. It’s heartwarming to see so many people helping with this fundraiser and sharing stories. Wishing love and peace to all who knew Valerie. I aspire to be more like her.”
This story really touched us and if it has touched you as well, be sure to check out their GoFundMe that is still up online HERE. Proceeds from the GoFundMe page will benefit Ms.Louie’s son, Andrew Louie, a college student, who is walking in his mother’s footsteps and on his way to becoming a nurse.
If there is any chance that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are reading this right now, we would love to see you reach out to Andrew Louie. We know that Meghan Markle is a huge animal lover and big advocate on adopting instead of buying so we know she would appreciate this story. Please LIKE and SHARE, let’s get the word out there about this incredible human, Ms. Valerie Louie. Please enjoy this story.