Cajun Navy Foundation’s Michigan Team Leader, Brian Antisdel, along with his rescue dogs, Sir Otis and Sir Winston, are currently traveling across Nevada towards California. When they arrive at their destination of Oroville, California in a few short hours, they will have traveled 2,459 miles in 2.5 days. The team is on their way to assist families who have lost everything.
The first stop will be to deliver Faygo pop, the one request Brian received from a family that just happens to be from his hometown of Dowagiac, Michigan. After that, Brian will meet with Oroville, California Mayor Linda Dahlmeier. That’s when he will begin animal relief efforts and assist with containment of fires.
As he prepares his gear and credentials, Brian is also mentally preparing himself for the arrival. A hint of nervousness is beginning to set in, among the many other emotions he is experiencing.
“Tears of joy, then sadness… because I have to present hope,” Brian explained. “I have to change gears to the seriousness of a life-saving mentality.”
Along the way and while mustering up the mental strength he knows he will need, Brian stops on occasion to work with the dogs and practice for service. Yesterday, he was both surprised and touched by one particular act of kindness from a man – also from his hometown, who had heard about Brian’s mission. Scott Bergmann, who was traveling in a semi at the Mexican Arizona border at the time, offered to meet Brian in Colorado to escort him through the Rocky Mountains via the frozen I-80.
“Scott Bergmann is a hero to me,” said Brian. “He’s from my hometown, but moved years ago. He said that I made him proud of his hometown, and he felt compelled to help our foundation. It was such a kind act, and it made me want to do more. I almost don’t feel worthy of such acts. He’s in a semi, even worse, but he took me through the mountains out of love.”
When Scott became aware of the unexplained connections that were being made, he told Brian,
“You know it is absolutely amazing how one guy from Dowagiac, Michigan is on a mission; and he meets up with another guy in the middle of nowhere, strictly by chance, from Dowagiac, Michigan – and strictly by chance, you’re going across the country to help another guy from Dowagiac, Michigan. If this ain’t God guiding you, I don’t know what is. You’re going to be fine out there.”
Brian’s story and Scott’s act of kindness serve as reminders that each CNF mission is a collective effort. Brian is running low on funds and still has to buy masks, extra filters (which need to be changed frequently), fire boots and other necessities. With help from donations, he plans to get all he needs and buy food for families in California in need. Gas cards are also helpful donations that can be purchased at any Walmart. Once a card is bought, Brian can pick it up.
To volunteer, send supplies, request supplies or ask for assistance, please visit CrowdRelief.net