Retired New York City firefighter gives his time to the dogs


August 24, 2015


Brian Kappan, Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League volunteer


Brian Kappen had always wanted to give back to the community, but as a New York City fireman with a second job painting houses, it wasn’t something he had time for.

“I always said, ‘When I get to Florida and don’t have to paint anymore, I’m going to give back,'” said Kappen, 59.

In 2010, he retired to Florida and kept his promise. He started volunteering at Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League in West Palm Beach.

“I love the look on the dog’s faces when they see me with a pocket full of chicken jerky and bone marrow treats,” he said.

On days he volunteers, Kappen gets to the animal rescue at 6:45 a.m. From there, he and other volunteers take each of the approximately 60 dogs out for a 10- to 15-minute walk before feeding them.

“There is no feeling like giving back and helping the animals,” he said. “That look in the dogs’ eyes when you’ve come to take them out is indescribable.”

Since he started with the organization, he has accumulated more than 1,300 volunteer hours.

“I do all that I can for them,” he said. “I kiss them, hug them and give them treats. I absolutely love it.”