golden tales masthead feb 2017

President's Message

To all my Golden lovers, I hope your Valentine's Day was full of love and your spouse, best friend, sweetheart, and furry creatures gave you lots of kisses, candy and flowers. I always get a beautiful Valentine card from my wife, Mary, and my dogs always give me a card also. This year my dog card read, “My favorite place is in your face. Happy Valentine’s Day from the Dog.” Sometimes their signature is hard to read, but I know it is signed with love. My other card came with no imperfections.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017, was a sad day for our organization. I am filled with much sadness to announce the loss of one of our dearest members, Norm Fee. Norm left our earth, as we know it, for a better place. More information is to be found in this newsletter. Let us pray for his lovely wife, Kay.

Our search for a new Vice President received multiple applications and we have selected Leigh Ervin as our new VP. You will find more info on Leigh in this newsletter. Leigh was at our Karsten’s Bark in the Park and was meeting everyone, so I hope you had a chance to meet her.

Speaking of Karsten’s Bark in the Park, we had a great time and the weather was perfect. The rain that probably kept some of our foul weather friends away, didn’t develop and everyone was dry and happy. We have lots of pictures to share in this newsletter. Congratulations to our Director of Events, Kay Dettling, and her wonderful volunteers, for another successful event. 

Last month’s Annual Doggie Street Festival was perfect. We had a great location, lots of volunteers and dogs. And we made a few bucks in donations. At the end of the event, it was announced that 85 dogs found forever homes. 

Coming up soon will be our Cutest Golden Contest. Do you think your Golden is the cutest you’ve ever seen and should be on calendars, in the movies, and nominated for an Oscar? Then take those pictures and get ready to enter. Who knows, you could have a cover girl or boy in your home.

A reminder to all our readers, if you have an idea for something you would like to see in Golden Tales, or if you want to write a story about your rescue dog, please send to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

That’s all for now. 


Oren Bishop
President, Rescue A Golden of Arizona

Meet Leigh Ervin, our new Vice President

Leigh brings with her more than 25 years of experience as an HR and talent management executive with several Fortune 100 companies. Perhaps more importantly, she and her husband of nearly 32 years have adopted or rescued a total of 9 dogs, 6 of them Goldens.

Although she has not served on other non-profit boards, in 2014 Leigh was the Staff Parish (HR Leader) of The Fountains United Methodist Church.  She and her family are very active with the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale.  Leigh has also led a monthly women’s Book Club for nearly 14 years.  Her business acumen, church and community endeavors, and her love of dogs will serve her well as our Vice President.

Leigh and her husband Ed adopted their first Golden in 1985 in their home state of New Jersey.  Subsequent Goldens, as well as a Bernese Mountain Dog and two mixed breeds, have been adopted through organizations such as Golden Retriever Connection in southeast Florida, where they lived for 13 years, to RAGofAZ.  They adopted 2-1/2 year old Golden, Chase, in 2007 from RAGofAZ.  After Chase crossed The Rainbow Bridge in 2016, they welcomed Toby, another 2-1/2 year old Golden, into their home.  Tragically, after less than 4 months, Toby also crossed The Bridge, having succumbed to an apparent enlarged heart.  Although they are currently parents to a rescued shepherd/malamute mix, they know their next Golden will find them in 2017 and are anxiously awaiting news.

Leigh’s husband, Ed, is a piano tuner/technician with over 1200 churches, schools, restaurants, teachers, and private customers throughout the greater Phoenix area.  They have three adopted children:  Kelsey Hope, 25, who relocated to North Carolina in 2016 with her significant other in the Air Force; Melissa Faith, 20, a fulltime student at ASU; and Jack Wesley, 12, a talented athlete and percussionist in 6th grade. 

In her spare time, Leigh enjoys hiking with her canine companions through the trails behind her home in Fountain Hills, reading, yoga, and puttering around her home.  She also occasionally writes a blog, including several entries about Chase, Toby, and her current dog Grace at  

We welcome Leigh to our Board and our Golden Love……..    

In Loving Memory of Norm Fee

As stated in my opening message, on February 22, we were informed that one of our beloved members, Norm Fee, had passed away. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his devoted wife, Kay, and all of Norm's family and friends. We are deeply saddened to be the bearers of sad news, as Norm was a long-time volunteer for almost a decade. Norm always stepped up to transport any Golden that needed his help. Norm's friendship and warmth was an enjoyment to the RAGofAZ family. 

A memorial service to celebrate Norm's life will be held on Tuesday, February 28th, 2:00 PM at Mariposa Gardens Memorial Park and Funeral Care, 400 S. Power Rd. (Broadway and Power), Mesa, AZ. 480-830-4422.

In lieu of flowers, Kay has requested donations to Rescue a Golden of Arizona in Norm's keeping with his devotion to the Goldens he loved and the organization that he and his wife so truly loved and served for so many years. In the near future there will be a link on our web site and Facebook page to leave condolences, memories and donations.

The RAGofAZ Calendar Committee would love your help!

We are looking for a few volunteers to serve on our 2018 calendar committee. Specifically, we would like people to help contact Cutest Golden Contest winners’ families (and others whose dogs will be featured in the calendar), and those with writing skills who would be able to help edit the winners’ stories. If you like people as well as Goldens, then you’re a great fit for this position! 
Please contact Judith at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Health Topics

Is your Golden Retriever an obsessive licker? Do you frequently catch him scratching or biting at his own feet or coat? It can often be hard to know whether it’s allergies or related to another possible health more

We're sure that many of you have seen some of the recent news stories regarding a Leptospirosis (Lepto) outbreak in the more

Vacation Tips 101 - Traveling with your Golden

If you are thinking about piling everyone into the car for a close-by adventure to the beach, lake, or mountains --- why not consider taking your Golden along with you?

You’ll have more fun. And they’ll certainly have more fun! As you probably know already, that’s what makes your Golden the happiest of all --- simply being together with the entire family.

Like with any vacation, there are many important things to consider before, during, and after arriving at your final destination. read more

Dog stays with owner for 20 hours after man breaks his neck 

While most of Michigan and the country were out celebrating on New Year's Eve, a northern Michigan man was lying in the snow — paralyzed after he slipped and fell. But his faithful dog saved his life, Fox 2 Detroit reported.
read more

2017 Karsten's Bark in the Park

CLICK HERE for photos.

Rainbow Bridge

Gone but never forgotten . . . remember the beloved Goldens who have crossed to the Bridge recently but will live forever in the hearts of those who loved them. CLICK HERE

And CLICK HERE to see a remembrance including those Goldens that have passed over the Rainbow Bridge previously.


Mark your Calendar 

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Tucson events This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
RAGofAZ 2017 Sched of Events Printable 2