FARMINGTON – A Navajo Nation member is a finalist for the Petco Foundation’s national Unsung Hero Award for his work caring for and improving the health condition of pets on reservations in the region.
Darell McCurtain, intake director at Nuzzles & Co. Pet Rescue and Adoption in Utah, began the pet program to provide additional support and rescue of pets in 2014. Since then, he has worked on the Navajo Nation, Ute Ouray Nation, Ute Mountain Nation and the Confederated Tribes of the Goshute.
As one of the five finalists with the pet supply company’s award, he received a $10,000 grant for Nuzzles & Co. and is competing for an additional $50,000 finalist grant. Voting for the Unsung Hero Award is open to the public and closes at 11 a.m. Friday. McCurtain was in second place as of Thursday, according to Nuzzles & Co.
“It’s a big undertaking, but we are reducing the number of unwanted animals that end up in shelters that would probably be euthanized,” McCurtain said. “It’s a lot of work but worth it.”
According to the Petco Foundation’s description, the Unsung Hero honorees go above and beyond saving animals and can prove one person can make a better world for pets.
“Because Darrell set this program up in 2014, we have the opportunity to help pets on the reservations,” said Jamie Usry, executive director of Nuzzles & Co. “Darrell is inspiring and that’s contagious. We are forever indebted to him for having the foresight to create this program. He has literally saved thousands of pet lives.”