A New York City blind man was waiting for the train to come on the 125th subway platform. Suddenly, Cecil Williams, 61, lost consciousness and plummeted to the tracks below. His guide dog, Orlando, took the fall with him.
But the super dog didn't go quietly. Witnesses to the incident said that Orlando was barking and pulling at his leash, in an attempt to keep his owner from falling. The New York Postspoke with bystander Ana Quinones, 53, of Morningside Heights.
"The dog was loyal to his master. He tried to save him. He was trying to pull him away when he was too close to the edge. He risked his own life to save his owner."
Orlando, who is 10 years old, was not going to let Williams die that day. When the dog could not keep his owner from falling, he didn't go anywhere. Well trained by "Guiding Eyes for the Blind", Orlando stayed with Williams licking his face, urging him to wake up as a speeding train came barreling towards them.
Eyewitness Matthew Martin, 54, attested to the super dog's bravery with the blind man. "He was kissing him, trying to get him to move."
Onlookers were shouting and screaming at the subway authorities to do something to help the blind man and his dog stuck on the tracks. Miraculously, Williams awoke next to his loyal black labrador in time to hear a MTA yelling for him to roll into the middle neutral area of the tracks. Both Williams and Orlando made the roll just in time as the subway train rolled over the place where they had just been seconds before. The train rolled two car links past the very spot where Williams had been passed out.
"I'm feeling amazed," Williams told reporters in the hospital. "I feel that God, the powers that be, have something in store from me. They didn't take me away this time. I'm here for a reason."
Williams suffered a cut on his head, most likely from the fall. Orlando the super dog was unharmed. But the story doesn't end happily ever after just yet.
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Because of Williams' insurance plan, Orlando will no longer be covered once he retires, which is coming up soon. At 10 years old, Orlando is already older for a guide dog. Williams has been blind since contracting meningitis in 1995. Orlando is only his second guide dog. The NYC blind man would love to be able to keep Orlando, but just can't afford him.