Darrell McCurtain, intake director at Nuzzles & Co., is among the finalists for the Petco Foundation’s national Unsung Hero award. The Petco Foundation and Victoria Stilwell are honoring five Unsung Heroes for their extraordinary, lifesaving efforts on behalf of animals with a $10,000 grant award for their animal welfare organization. One honoree will be awarded the national Unsung Hero award by Petco Foundation and earn an additional $50,000 to support their lifesaving work. Animal lovers across the nation will select the national awardee through popular vote. Watch McCurtain’s story and vote.

McCurtain, a Navajo tribe member himself, works to improve the conditions for pets on the reservations by working with the Navajo Nation, Ute Ouray Nation, Ute Mountain Nation and the Confederated Tribes of the Goshute.

“Because Darrell set this program up in 2014, we have the opportunity to go help dogs on reservations,” said Jamie Usry, executive director of Nuzzles & Co. “He is inspiring and that’s contagious. I’m glad Darrell had the foresight to set up this program and he has saved thousands of lives.”

The Unsung Hero honorees go above and beyond saving animals. They are local heroes who share the Petco Foundation’s goal to create a lifesaving nation and their inspiring stories prove the difference that one person can make toward creating a better world for pets.

“There are heroes in every community who dedicate their lives to helping animals and are true lifesaving champions,” said Susanne Kogut, president of the Petco Foundation. “Honoring these extraordinary people and telling their stories is our way of saying, ‘thank you.’ And perhaps these stories will inspire others to be heroes too.”

Victoria Stilwell traveled across the country documenting the incredible work of these heroes in a series of videos that can be viewed at petcofoundation.org/unsunghero.

“Seeing firsthand the incredible work being done by these incredible, yet humble, people in their communities was truly inspiring,” said Victoria Stilwell. “It was a tremendous honor capturing on tape the spirit and passion of what they do every day, and I’m very excited for a wider audience to witness their amazing work via the Unsung Heroes video series.”

All heartwarming Unsung Hero stories are available to view at petcofoundation.org/unsunghero. Unsung Hero voting will close on May 15, 2020 at noon CST.

Stuart
Stuart is the founder, writer and wrangler at several sites including Gastronomic SLC, Utah Now and, The Utah Review; Stuart is a former restaurant critic of more than five years, working for the Salt Lake Tribune and has worked extensively with other local publications from Utah Stories through to Salt Lake Magazine and Visit Salt Lake.