KANNAPOLIS, N.C. -- A five-year-old Kannapolis girl met her new guardian angel on Friday thanks to fundraising from an entire community. She suffers from seizures and the dog is trained to sense them.
It was a moment a year and a half in the making for the Davis family.
"We've waited a long time for this," said mom, Corey Davis, of the day Anna Beth, 5, would meet her new guardian angel, Gabe.
At just 14 months Anna Beth was diagnosed with a brain disorder.
"Lissencephaly means smooth brain and it can cause seizures and can cause delays so she started the seizures at about two and a half," said Corey.
Anna Beth suffered up to five seizures four to five days a week, so the family found out about dogs like Gabe that can be trained to sense a seizure coming on.
"Gabe will actually be able to go and tell mom and dad with a paw or whatever they want to use as a recognizable reaction trained alert from him to say, 'Hey, she's having an episode,'" said trainer, Cheri Campbell with Service Dogs by Warren Retrievers.
It will be a life changing relief for her parents.
"There's seizures we can't hear and we needed someone to be able to tell us when she was having them, especially at night. She has them a lot in her sleep," said Davis.
But the Davis family needed help: getting Gabe would cost $26,000. That’s where family, friends, and the community came together. They started a fund and raised the money.
"God's hand was in it from the very beginning with people that read the article and so many people got in touch with the family," said family friend Brenda Hodgens.
And now Gabe is already part of the family and will change their lives.
"It'll allow Anna Beth to start moving to a little independence. She's able to sleep in her own room and play where we don't feel like we're right over her," said dad, Tim.
The Davis's said they can't put into words how much they appreciate the gift.
"We have been blown away at the overwhelming support of friends and family and schools, churches -- so many people have given and we just want to thank them," said Corey.
If you would like to donate towards Anna Beth’s fund, you can click here and donate to her fund at Service Dogs by Warren Retrievers. During November they are matching any donations so they double their value.