Therapy dog to provide support to western Massachusetts EMTs

Hampden County

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – EMTs are out on the road every day without knowing what type of call they’ll be sent to next or how many lives they’ll have to try and save.

The stress of the job can be overwhelming, and that’s why American Medical Response in Springfield has added a special employee to their staff….Freddie the Goldendoodle!

Freddie’s job will be to support the AMR EMTs that serve Springfield, Greenfield, and Baystate Hospitals.

“He is going to learn the emotions of the EMTs and he is going to know when they’re stressed out and when they’re going to need him the most,” said Melissa Piscitelli, operations administrative supervisor.

He was named after a longtime colleague and friend Fred DellaValle who passed away in 2018.

“Freddie was very special to us,” Piscitelli said. “Freddie was the VP of government relations and he loved AMR. He loved the profession, he loved taking care of the EMTs and paramedics, and Freddie [the dog] is going to continue with his legacy.”

“I always felt like there was a lot of things I could fix,” Piscitelli said. “My duties are ordering supplies for the crews, ordering uniforms for the crews, helping coordinate getting their vehicles fixed, but there was always the missing link of helping with their emotional well being and Freddie is the first step to bridge that gap.”

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