Grammy Nominee Gavin DeGraw Brings Holiday Cheer, Reuniting Soldier with Dog from Middle East and Presenting Veteran with Trained Service Dog

    Photo courtesy of Paws of War
    Photo courtesy of Paws of War

    It is the kind of event everyone wants to be invited to, but the honored invitees were the heroes of our country who are veterans and first responders. The private, free event featured multi-Platinum singer/songwriter Gavin DeGraw who was on hand to support Paws of War and their mission to serve veterans and soldiers.

    “We are so grateful that Gavin DeGraw took time out of his busy schedule to help support our mission and give back to veterans and current military members,” says Robert Misseri, the co-founder of Paws of War. “It was an amazing event for all those who attended.”

    The event was held at The Wilson NYC on December 19, 2023, for veterans, active military members, and first responders. The Wilson provided the restaurant space for the event venue, and DeGraw sang songs from his new album, A Classic Christmas. There were also a few surprises to make the evening even more special.

    One of the special surprises during the event was reuniting a dog named Kucik (pronounced koo-chick) with First Lieutenant Alyse Schnurr. While deployed to the Middle East, she rescued and bonded with a stray puppy and couldn’t bear to leave her behind when deployment was over. Turning to Paws of War for help, they took action to move Kucik to the U.S., where she can live with 1st Lt. Schnurr in Clarksville, Tenn.

    Photo courtesy of Paws of War

    “I’m thrilled beyond words to be reunited with Kucik,” says 1st Lt. Schnurr. “I’m so grateful for the help that Paws of War did in making this happen!”

    Additionally, Paws of War and DeGraw presented a veteran in need with a trained service dog, free of charge. The introduction at the event is the beginning of what should be a lengthy caring relationship that helps at both ends of the leash. The veteran was Staff Sergeant US Army Infantry Matthew Brustien who received a service dog named Sadie.

    “You guys know how special supporting our military is to me, and how much I love my dog,” says DeGraw. “Tuesday night I got to help Paws of War reunite U.S. Army First Lieutenant Alyse Schnurr with a puppy and gift a service dog Sadie to Staff Sergeant U.S. Army Infantry Matthew Brustien. It was truly an honor to be part of such a special night. Check out Paws of War to see how you can help.”

    Paws of War also focuses on giving back to veterans in various ways. They have helped veterans with numerous issues, including suicide prevention, service and support dogs, companion cats and dogs, food insecurity, veterinary care, etc. Paws of War has a large loyal following of supporters and looks forward to working with new corporate sponsors to support these life-saving programs. To donate to support their mission, visit its site at

    Photo courtesy of Paws of War
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