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Friday, February 26, 2010

Godspeed Charles Israel

Fifteen-year Oklahoma state Senate employee Charles Israel, who used a Service Dog, suffered a stroke on Tuesday at the capitol. He later died at an Oklahoma City hospital. He was 48.

Charles Israel began work at the Oklahoma State Senate 15 years ago. He was currently employeed as a research analyst and administrator for the Senate's Web site. Israel had muscular dystrophy, used a wheelchair and was assisted by his Service Dog, Hobbes — who was purchased for him through an auction held by his friends and co-workers about a decade ago. Hobbes assisted him at work and home.

The Oklahoma state Senate honored Israel with a moment of silence at the start of Wednesday's session. “Charles epitomized perseverance, courage and dedication in the face of adversity,” said Senate President Pro Tempore Glenn Coffee. “We all mourn his passing, and send our heartfelt condolences to his mother, Norma, and his sisters, Jennifer and Sara.”

Friends and co-workers brought flowers and other items to create a memorial outside his office on the third floor of the capitol.

Instead of donations or flowers, please make donations to Paws with a Cause.

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