The new Western Arizaon Humane Society building opened its doors Monday morning with a ceremony to celebrate.
The ceremony included the Marine Corps Color Guard, the singing of the National Anthem by Steven Jenkins, a ribbon cutting by the Lake Havasu Area Chamber of Commerce, with speeches by WAHS Executive Director Patti Gillmore, Mayor Cal Sheehy and architect Paul Lehr. Destiny Alcock-Younger translated the speeches in sign language.
Mayor Cal Sheehy welcomed the crowd and presented an award to the building’s architect Paul Lehr.
“We’re here this morning to celebrate this mementous occasion. We would not be here without Paul and his firm sticking with Lake Havasu for the past two decades to make this happen,” Sheehy said.
Lehr called the award amazing.
“This is amazing and it’s just such a huge team effort that can’t be stated enough … all the people who have contributed to this effort. The love for animals in Lake Havasu and the people of Havasu in general should be proud of this moment,” Lehr said.
WAHS Executive Director Patti Gillmore said, “Our team has been working for months to make this happen today. We did it!”
“This is for Kathy. For all the donors and all those who contributed to this,” Gillmore said.
The ceremony honored one of the greatest champions of the project, Kathy Hodel. Hodel not only led fundraising efforts for the new facility, but worked tirelessly to ensure the animals at the prior facility were cared for properly and in comfort. Hodel lost her battle with cancer last year.
After the ceremony, media and local dignitaries in attendance were invited inside for a first look at the new building. Two pets were adopted during the event.
Havasu Art Guild volunteers including Jenny Anderson and Havasu artists Pam Reineke painted murals to decorate the new facility’s walls.
Western Arizona Humane Society is now officially located at 2610 Sweetwater Ave. Call them at 928-855-5083 or visit the website at westernarizonahumane.org.