March 31

Alice Drew
Posted on March 31st, 2014 at 1:15 PM by AWA
Alice with her beloved Indy

Alice with her beloved Indy

In Loving Remembrance

Alice Drew

1923 – 2014

 

On March 24, 2014 an angel passed over the Rainbow Bridge, joining her beloved animals.  In 1989 Alice co-founded the Animal Welfare Association (AWA) dedicated to helping the abandoned, stray and forgotten animals.

Ever since the beginning, Alice has been the spark that lights the fire of the AWA. Her indomitable spirit and passion to rescue every animal in need has been an inspiration to us all. She is our ‘mom’ and our friend, and an angel to all the strays she’s helped find forever homes.

 When AWA began, Alice and others would spend countless hours ‘camped out’ under a tent in the middle of Warrenton, showing their pens filled with foster animals, chatting with the public, answering questions, taking applications from people interested in volunteering, and occasionally adopting a lucky dog or cat to their new loving family.

 Also, every other Saturday, Alice and others transported animals over forty miles to the then nearest PetsMart in Bridgeton MO to be shown for adoption. While many animals found loving homes from this location, it was a strain on everyone, including the animals. There was the loading of crates and critters at home, the long drive in, then unloading, setting up the pens and crates for presentation, and reloading vehicles for the long trek home. And this went on month after month, year after year rain or shine. It wears you out just thinking about it.

 Her husband Homer, wanting to create an annual fundraiser, organized the first Guns & Hoses Benefit Softball Game between the sheriff’s department and KWRE/KFAV Radio. For years, this was our most popular fundraiser, and for all involved, a labor of love. Sadly, Homer passed away shortly before the first pitch, so to honor his memory and dedication to the AWA, the event was renamed the Homer W. Drew Memorial Softball Game.

 We also had monthly meetings, an annual Christmas party, occasional fund raisers, and periodic pleas were made to our Warren County Commissioners for financial assistance to assist the AWA in our effort to save the county’s stray animals. At the opening of the Warrenton City Animal Shelter, a plaque was placed on the front of the facility dedicating the shelter to Homer and Alice Drew and their tireless effort to rescue the stray animals of Warren County. And, Alice was there for it all.

 Alice’s dedication continues to inspire a new generation of AWA volunteers, and until recently, it seemed she was always out on a call to rescue a feral cat, a litter of puppies, kittens, or a dog in distress. One of us would usually go with her, but sometimes she’d head out on her own, braving who knows what to bring another of God’s creatures to safety. She’s been scratched, bitten, called out at all hours of the day and night, in snow sleet, thunderstorms and heat waves and wouldn’t have it any other way.

 As an example, Alice and several other volunteers were called out one night in the fog, drizzle and freezing rain to rescue a Mama dog who was delivering a litter of pups in a water filled ditch next to a gravel country road. By the time we arrived, several pups had already entered the world, and the clock was ticking as we convinced Mama dog we were there to help. We scooped up our precious bundles, warming them in blankets and a warm vehicle, as we hurried to the local vet clinic where help was waiting.

 Sadly, due to illness or injury, an animal will need to be humanely euthanized. And, Alice is there too, cradling a dear soul as tears roll down her cheeks, comforting them as they leave to wait for us at the Rainbow Bridge. Sometimes, animal rescue can break your heart, and other times it makes your heart sing with joy, as another creature finds their new family and forever home.

 In 2007, Alice Drew was awarded the Pedigree Lifetime Achievement Award for her lifelong commitment to the welfare of animals.  Alice was nominated for this award by an AWA volunteer. Alice was accompanied on her all-expense paid trip to New York by long time AWA volunteer Rene’ Bass. On Saturday, February 10, 2007, Alice Drew was presented with a crystal plaque and watch at the annual black tie Pedigree Awards Dinner held at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. Alice is pictured accepting her award wearing a cast on her right hand. Her injury occurred several weeks before their trip, while trying to referee a spontaneous disagreement between two of her foster dogs.

  Well into her eighties Alice’s devotion helped to rescue over 10,000 dogs and cats. We are blessed to share her friendship and passion for Saving Our Strays.  God bless you dear Alice, you will always be in our thoughts and prayers.

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