Inked for a cause: Tattoo parlor raises money for veterans to receive service dogs

Posted at 11:54 PM, Feb 05, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-06 11:01:07-05

OAK GROVE, Ky. (WTVF) — There's a lot to consider, when a choice like a tattoo is so permanent. For Pam McPherson, the newest ink on her arm has been on her mind for years.

"I’m getting a hummingbird today," said McPherson. "My dad used to call me his little hummingbird because my mouth would run fast, so it’s kind of a memorial to them."

But she finally pulled the trigger, because of a cause close to her heart. "We’re military so we support the military," she said.

Tattoo shop Hell or High Water is donating half of all their Saturday proceeds to the Quigg and Callender Project, named in honor of two friends of the founder — Michael Myers. "This is two men that had an impact on my life, and I want these two men to have an impact on everybody else’s lives. They were friends, they were great men, they were patriots and the world needs to know who those men were," said Myers.

Both veterans died by suicide, brought on by anxiety and PTSD. It's a pain that Michael knows first hand. "There are days I can’t even get out of bed. I stay in bed for 5 days," he said.

But he's been able to press forward, one paw at a time. "This is Pearl Myers -- this is my service dog, sit, good girl," he told NewsChannel 5.

Michael is quite confident, he might not still be here without his four-legged best friend. "She’s amazing, she knows my ticks before I do," said Myers.

But dogs like Pearl cost thousands of dollars to train, which is where "QCP" steps in. Proceeds from fundraisers like these will make it possible for other veterans to get their own service dogs like Pearl.

"I don’t think some people realize how valuable having a support animal can be and how much it can help them in a lot of ways. These dogs are just amazing," said McPherson.

That's why Pam will always treasure her permanent reminder of the time she helped a veteran. "It’ll be a sweet reminder of today and the cause," she said.

QCP has already identified a few veterans who will receive funding to train their own new service dogs. in the coming months.