It was a devastating day last summer for Walter Hollier of Round Rock, Texas, when he received news that he had terminal liver cancer. With no hope for recovery, Hollier decided to use his remaining time to manage his affairs.
“When I was diagnosed, I was given three to six months,” Hollier explained to CBS Austin.
As a father and grandfather, Hollier was saddened by the fact that his family would be losing him. His grandson, Maddox, is only a child and it pains Hollier to know that he won’t be around to see him grow and develop into an adult.
An additional concern of Hollier’s was regarding what would happen to his dog and trusted friend, Diego. Hollier had an additional dog, Doc, at this point in his life who would be going to his family, but no one he knew seemed opened to taking Diego in.
Worried about his waning time, Hollier started working hard to try and find Diego a home.
“He loves people. He loves to run. And he’s a red heeler,” Hollier continued. “And I thought, well I can’t die and have him in limbo.”
But Hollier’s searches didn’t seem to be leading anywhere. Growing desperate, he took to social media to share a plea.
“So in all likelihood, I will be leaving this world soon,” Hollier wrote on his Facebook account in a post that was shared on January 26. “I must find [Diego] a caring and loving home. He is 8 yrs old and loves people.”
“He has not shown ANY aggressive behavior in 8 yrs.”
Hollier never expected his post to go viral, but within 12 hours it had 1,300 responses and over 100 people asking to be the one to take in Diego. Hollier was blown away by the response, but soon made his decision.
“Thanks to all you wonderful people, I have found Diego a wonderful home,” Hollier wrote in a follow up post. “You folks are amazing, and have restored my faith in Humanity. God bless each and every one of you for the kindness you have bestowed me.”
Hollier settled on giving Diego to Last Resort Recovery Center, which is a rehabilitation center for men who have struggled with addiction. He explained that bringing Diego over to them was really tough.
“I cried down the dirt road,” Hollier went on to say to CBS Austin.
“It was like cutting a cord, you know he’s like my child.”
While Hollier is heartbroken that he’s separated from his beloved pet, the silver lining is that Diego will be a source of comfort to people going through rough periods of their lives.
As for Hollier’s future, he’s enjoying his final days cherishing every moment left. And it’s comforting that one of his final acts was getting Diego a home where he’ll be loved and appreciated.