Some children with severe autism have been helped by the soothing power of a service dog. That is why Amy Hoffmann and her family have been desperately trying to raise $13,000 needed to have a service dog trained for their son, Eiji.
Eiji is four years old and has regular seizures. His family is working with an Ohio non-profit called 4 Paws for Ability. The family raised about $6,000 -- half of what they needed.
In the meantime, their other son, 2-year-old Kai, has also been diagnosed with autism. To make matter worse, their Woodbridge townhouse has been broken into. It has been tough time for the Hoffmann family.
What Amy didn't know is that FOX 5 wasn't the only visitor she would receive on Thursday. Somebody else was on the way too.
Joel Bassam of Easterns Automotive Group had just deposited in the Hoffman's fundraising account the $6,915 needed to meet their goal and get Eiji his dog.
"We've been in this community for 26 years and we're always looking for great ways to give back," Bassam said. "We just want to touch the lives of the people we give to. It's one of those things that is just a perfect fit for us."
"I don't know who this guy is, but I just want to hug him," Hoffman said after she greeted him. "Thank you so much. I can't say it enough."
It will take 15 months for Eiji's dog to be trained.