Sophie’s Companions for Veterans, Janet Carpenter

Erin Dickerson’s Prayer

I was reminded this week of a comic strip from  A father and son are standing at a crosswalk waiting to cross the street when the boy tells his father that he wishes they had superpowers. The father asks the boy to watch and the father proceeds to compliment a sad man on his hat.  He tells his son to look at the man’s face again and the man is now grinning from ear to ear.  He explains to his son that we all have powers. 


Help us to remember the power we hold in our thoughts, our words, and our actions.  Help us to use our power not to tear others down, but to lift one another up and to create a better world for all of us to live in.


Volunteer Signups Available Online with the Virtual Clipboard

Did you know that you can now signup to volunteer or to participate in social events using a simple online registration form right from your phone or PC? The Member Calendar has a complete list of upcoming volunteer opportunities and social events.


  • Debe Dockins announced that on tree delivery day at the tree lot on 11/19/2022, she needs soups and chilis. Let her know what soup or chili you are bringing and please bring it hot and in something to keep it hot. Put your name on your container and bring a serving spoon. The soups will be served around 10:15 AM.
  • Debe Dockins announced that D. Ralph Young will be speaking at the Centerville Library in the Cynthia Linick Community Room on November 10,2022 at 7 PM. D. Ralph Young has spoken twice at CNO lunches in the past few years. D. Ralph Young will recount his war years serving in the Pacific as a gunner’s mate on the USS J. Franklin Bell during WWII.
  • Craig Dring announced that the TOP Optimist Club is selling 150 Poinsettias for $15 that will be delivered at lunch on 12/6/2022. They expect to raise $1000. They have chosen to purchase a pool wheelchair for the RecPlex which is about $1000.
  • Nancy Lehren announced that two Build-a-Bear events will be held at the USO on December 10, 2022.
  • Kelly Stone thanked Dan Thalheimer and Art Hung for stepping up to be the advisors for the Watts Middle School Optimist club. She is hoping that the club will meet next week.
  • Greg Griffin thanked Mike Cordonnier for restoring the sales trailer for the tree lot.
  • Greg Griffin announced that tree delivery day is November 19, 2022. Two semi-trailers with a total of nearly 1000 trees need to be unloaded, sorted, labeled and stored. We need as many people as possible to show up for this. There will be high school kids to help, but we still need LOTS of members. You get rewarded with your choice of 20+ different hot chilis and soups after the trees are put away. Dates to remember are:
    • 11/5/2022, 9 AM – 11:30 AM, Lot setup in preparation for delivery day in two weeks
    • 11/19/2022, 8 AM – 11:30 AM, Tree Delivery Day
    • 11/25/2022, Tree lot opens to the public – see your team schedule
    • 12/17/2022, 8 AM – 11:30 AM, Teardown and Pack Trailers

Happy Birthday Deb Saunders

Happy Birthday Deb Saunders! With the help of expert vocal coach Charlie Tapp, we sang Happy Birthday to the great Deb Saunders. I’m surprised we know the words since we OBVIOUSLY do not know the notes. Deb took it all in and smiled at us even though she knows we couldn’t sing our way out of a bag made of tissue.

Sophie’s Companions for Veterans, Janet Carpenter

Debe Dockins introduced Janet Carpenter, the Executive Director & Founder of Sophie’s Companions for Veterans along with the “Sophie Kerrigan for the Love of Animals Foundation.”

Sophie’s Foundation has received the Prestigious Better Business Bureau Eclipse Integrity Award, two-time winner of Caresource People’s Choice Award, two-time winner of 100+ Women Who Care Grant for outstanding service to the community, disabled Veterans and rescue dogs.

Janet was just honored for being 1 of top 25 Women of Impact in Dayton for 2022.

She is also the Director and Founder of Fit Body Focus, her Pilates and Yoga Studio in Centerville for 17 years.

Janet has also been a part of Big Brothers, Big Sisters for over 40 years and is still close to her little sister as of today!

Janet lives in Centerville with her husband, 4 rescue dogs, 3 cats and a goose.


Sophies Companions for Veterans” (SCV) operates through the Sophie Kerrigan “For the Love of Animals,” a 501(c) (3) foundation that Janet setup as a memorial to her daughter Sophie that was killed at the age of 17. Sophie loved animals and it was her dream to help neglected animals find a home. The foundation raises money to care for neglected and abused animals. The foundation founded in 2012 provides animals with surgeries, medications, fencing and food and they have served over 1000 animals.

The SCV program rescues animals and retrains them to be companions for veterans. They only use rescue dogs, half of which were set to be euthanized.

SVC got started because the Dayton VA heard about the foundation and asked to meet with Janet about providing companion animals for veterans. She figured disabled veterans really needed service animals, but they figured out that companion dogs would still help many of them. So far 30 veterans have been helped. The dogs help with many issues including night terrors. PTSD, Parkinson’s and anxiety.

Janet showed us a video about the program that you can view on the website home page here.

Steve Runnels, Assistant Liaison

Janet introduced Steve Runnels, the Assistant Veteran Liaison for the foundation. Steve is retired from the United States Army and lives with his wife and his service dog Lily, who was also at today’s meeting. In Steve’s spare time, he enjoys playing disc golf.

Steve said that Lily and other service dogs save lives and make it possible to function in society.

Lily is Steve’s best friend. She makes it possible for him speak to a room full of strangers. Before her he wouldn’t even want to be in a crowded room like at today’s lunch. Lily makes it possible for him to go to the grocery and get items off the shelf without feeling terribly anxious. These dogs help give life a purpose.

Steve has had night terrors for a long time and now also has epilepsy. Lily can pull him out of fits. Lily can sense when his or another’s anxiety is elevated, and she helps calm them down.

Steve is grateful for Janet and the foundation.

About the Sophie Kerrigan “For the Love of Animals” Foundation

From the website from Janet Carpenter

As Sophie’s mom, after my daughter was killed in 2012 to continue her dream, I started the Sophie Kerrigan “For the Love of Animals” Foundation. She was passionate about assisting animals that were abused or forgotten and wanted to help them live a loving and secure existence whether adopted or not. To this day, we have helped over a thousand animals with food, medications, surgeries, fencing and much more. In 2016 another program was added called “Sophie’s Companions for Veterans Foundation”. This is where we now have the privilege of pulling an animal even minutes before it’s euthanized to have it trained to be a companion or service dog for a Veteran suffering from the demons of PTSD and many other disabilities. We have witnessed the power of change in what a rescue can do to alleviate so many of those daily struggles for a Veteran. Sophie’s Foundation has proudly received the prestigious Better Business Bureau “Eclipse Integrity Award” due to hard work and determination as well as winning $21,000 from 100+ Women Who Care Organization.


Through the training of rescues becoming a companion or service dog to one of our Veterans and allowing each to create a powerful bond between each other. Giving strength and the perseverance to step outside their comfort zone back into life while dealing with the demons of PTSD and other illnesses. Both Veteran and rescue benefit from a better life.


To continually provide Veterans and rescues alike with the opportunity to heal through companionship.

About the Foundation

From the website

In 2012 Sophie Kerrigan “For the Love of Animals” a 501(c)(3) Foundation was created to memorialize a young animal activist, our daughter Sophie that was killed. She adored animals and her dream was to help the ones neglected find a home, get them shelter or comfort in a rescue. Since Sophie’s passing,” For the Love of Animals” has operated many events to raise funds for the needs of animal sanctuaries, shelters and rescues of many kinds which in turn has helped easily over 1000 animals.

Thank You

Thank you, Janet Carpenter, for educating us about Sophie’s Companions for Veterans and the Sophie Kerrigan “For the Love of Animals” Foundation.

New Member Readings and Inductions

NameSponsor1st 2nd 3rd Reading or Induction
Tom DuncanBeth Duncan3rd Reading
Salli DuncanBeth Duncan3rd Reading
Eric ParsleyMike BevisInduction

Welcome Guests!

GuestGuest Of
Carol HughesJean Pummill
Caroline LieblBob Duffy
Gina SmithRotary
Ian HussDonna Huss
Joan SchimlMike Bevis
Lisa MedeirosMIke Bevis
RebaJane StrombergSpeaker
Salli DuncanBeth Duncan
Sarah MalchowMIke Bevis
Sherry HannaRotary
Susan NelsonBob Duffy
Tom DuncanBeth Duncan
Travis RindlerMike Bevis

Happy Bucks

Tim ClemmerNancy Lehren rescued him at the Haunted Trail
Deb Saunders$6, she was born 11/1/1956 and this year she is 66 years old
Eric ParsleyEarned Certified Cyber Security certificate and his boss gave him a huge raise
Gary AndersonCleveland Browns won last night and can’t lose for another 13 days
Jesse GaitherDaughter has been given an internship at the Center for Intervention Research in Schools (CIRS) at Ohio University which is normally just for seniors
Jesse GaitherMinuteman Press won the Springboro Chamber Business of the Year
Joan CordonnierNiece works at Minuteman Press
Beth DuncanSergeant Larry England’s Michigan slam fine of Gary Hansen

Sergeants at Arms

Jesse GaitherMinuteMan Press of Centerville received the Springboro Chamber Business of the year award, yet his business is located in Centerville
Jerry StahleyLost his name badge
Bob CollinsDid not meet his guest at the door instead he was in the lunch line
Gary HansenA Michigan football player started a brawl against the entire Michigan State football team when they played over the weekend
Stan FronzagliaDidn’t realize he was complaining about a sergeant’s handling of the name badge box when complaining to Sergeant Larry England

Membership Anniversaries

Tom YoungNovember 2, 20211


Cheryl ReichelNovember 1
Deb SaundersNovember 1
Wendy HattanNovember 2
Drew MckenzieNovember 6
Charlie TappNovember 6
Judy McFaddenNovember 6
JoAnne RauNovember 7

CNO Donations – 2013 through September 2022

Click here to see a summary of donations the club has made since 2013

Thank You Notes Received

CLICK HERE to see this week’s Thank You Notes

A Copy of this Week’s Meeting PowerPoint Slide Deck is here

All Photos taken at this Week’s Meeting are here

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