Thunder Dog: The True Story of a Blind Man, His Guide Dog, and the Triumph of Trust at Ground Zero - eBook  -     By: Michael Hingson, Susy Flory
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Thunder Dog: The True Story of a Blind Man, His Guide Dog, and the Triumph of Trust at Ground Zero - eBook

Thomas Nelson / 2012 / ePub

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Product Information

Format: DRM Protected ePub
Vendor: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: 2012
ISBN: 9781400203253
ISBN-13: 9781400203253
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

Faith. Trust. Triumph.

“I’m sorry,” the doctor said. “He is permanently and totally blind. There is nothing we can do for him.”

George and Sarah Hingson looked at each other, devastated. Their six-month-old son, Michael was a happy, strawberry blond baby boy, healthy and normal in every way except one. When the Hingsons switched on a light or made silly faces, Michael did not react. Ever. “My best suggestion is that you send him to a home for the blind,” the doctor continued. “He will never be able to do anything for himself.”

Forty-seven years later, a yellow Labrador retriever puppy was born in the whelping unit of Guide Dogs for the Blind in San Rafael, California. The puppy’s name was Roselle. On September 11, 2001, she saved Michael’s life. This is Roselle’s story too.

—From the Introduction

Every moment in Michael Hingson’s and Roselle’s lives seemed to lead up to this day. When one of four hijacked planes flew into the World Trade Center’s north tower on September 11, 2001, Michael Hingson, a district sales manager for a data protection and network security systems company, was sitting down for a meeting. His guide dog, Roselle, was at his feet. Paired for twenty-one months, man and dog spent that time forging a bond of trust, much like police partners who trust their lives to each other.

Michael couldn’t see a thing, but he could hear the sounds of shattering glass, falling debris, and terrified people flooding around him and Roselle. However, Roselle sat calmly beside him. In that moment, Michael chose to trust Roselle’s judgment and not to panic. They were a team.

Thunder Dog is a story that will forever change your spirit and your perspective. It illuminates Hingson’s lifelong determination to achieve parity in a sighted world and how the rare trust between a man and his guide dog can inspire an unshakable faith in each one of us.

Author Bio

Michael Hingson, national ambassador for the Braille Literacy Campaign,  is a miraculous survivor of 9/11. He lives with his wife, Karen, in the San Francisco Bay Area with two guide dogs, Africa and Fantasia, and one cat, Sherlock.

Susy Flory is the author or coauthor of eight books, including the New York Times bestseller Thunder Dog. She lives in California and is the director of the West Coast Christian Writers Conference.

Author Info

Susy Flory is the author or coauthor of four books, including So Long Status Quo, a memoir about nine women who changed the world. Her articles have appeared in Today's Christian Woman, Enrichment Journal, Guideposts books,, and with Focus on the Family. With degrees from UCLA in English and psychology and a background that includes journalism, education, and communications, Susy loves to uncover stories with happy endings that inspire and challenge readers to a life of passion, boldness, and adventure. She grew up on the back of a quarter horse in northern California and now lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband, two children, and two dogs, Eli (a chocolate Lab) and Sprinkles, (a silky terrier).

Michael Hingson, national ambassador for the Braille Literacy Campaign, is a miraculous survivor of 9/11. He now owns The Michael Hingson Group, Inc., a consulting firm concerning inclusiveness and diversity and a platform for engaging speaking opportunities. A graduate of the University of California (Irvine) and a cum laude graduate with a master’s degree in physics, Hingson has never let blindness stop him from achieving his goals. His life is a testimony to the power of trust, perseverance, and the amazing bond between humans and animals. Michael and his wife, Karen, live in the San Francisco Bay Area with two yellow lab guide dogs, Africa and Fantasia, and one cat, Sherlock.

Kirkus Reviews

The story of a four-legged superhero named Roselle, who led her owner out of the ruins of the World Trade Center.

Hingson's remarkable relationship with guide dogs began long before the events of 9/11. Growing up blind, the author came to rely on their dedication, loyalty and courage at a very young age. Guide dogs helped him navigate through grade school, college and his first jobs. It was a beautiful but storm-shy Labrador retriever with a golden coat who would help save his life. The chilling account of how the two worked in tandem to safely descend 78 floors and 1,463 steps, while simultaneously helping others remain calm, is truly awe-inspiring. A decade has not muted the horrors of 9/11, and Hingson and co-writer Flory do a magnificent job of relating what it was like in the aftermath of the attack. That account alone would have been a worthy and important endeavor. But the authors go beyond that, offering both an illuminating look at the realities blind people face every day and the astounding capabilities of seeing-eye dogs. Seamlessly weaving the narrative between the extraordinary exodus from the burning towers and Hingson's fascinating life is a savvy literary device that only enriches the tale.

A tragic, inspirational and enlightening memoir.

Product Reviews

4.8 Stars Out Of 5
4.8 out of 5
5 out Of 5
(5 out of 5)
5 out Of 5
(5 out of 5)
Meets Expectations:
5 out Of 5
(5 out of 5)
of customers would recommend this product to a friend.
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  1. New Brunswick
    Age: 18-24
    Gender: female
    4 Stars Out Of 5
    August 26, 2011
    New Brunswick
    Age: 18-24
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    This is a true story of a blind man named Michael Hingson. Blind since birth, Michael has learned how to live a normal life despite his blindness. He and his guide dog, Roselle, traveled every day to the twin towers in New York City, where Michael worked an office job. On September 11th, 2001, that all changed. The World Trade Center was attacked, and the plane hit just fifteen floors above him. He and his co-workers knew that they had to get out. And soon. He managed to walk down 78 flights of stairs, which was approximately 1,463 steps. Walking down a fume-filled concrete staircase, he and Roselle worked together, helping others during that time.

    In this book, Michael gives you a brief history of his life in each chapter. The book has Michael's family history, stories of his previous guide dogs, and a thought of how he manages to live his life as a blind person. I truly enjoyed reading this book. It's set in such a sad, awful time, but having the story told by a person who was really experiencing it made me realize a little bit of what happened. I cried through most of this book, but I'm glad that I read it. Roselle and Michael are truly heroes, and their story is such an amazing one. I heartily recommend this book!
  2. UK
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Inspiring story of trust between man and guide dog
    August 19, 2011
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    The True Story of a Blind Man, His Guide Dog, and the Triumph of Trust at Ground Zero.

    I was interested in reading this book because my friend's son had just received his first Guide Dog, and since I'm not going to get to see them for a while, reading felt like the next best thing.

    One man and his dog, and a long walk downstairs on one of the most terrifying days of their lives. It's a story in itself, but this story is woven into the background of Michael's relationship with all his Guide Dogs, with his life before and after the events of September 11th, and with the story of his own childhood growing up blind living in a sighted world.

    It did surprise me how much of this book was about events unconnected with the Twin Towers; that was not what I had expected from the title. But this did not detract from my enjoyment of the book; instead I found this to be a fascinating insight into Michael's life, and into the relationship he has developed with his dogs over the years. It has helped me to think about particular challenges my friend's son may be facing at this time, and I hope his own dog gives him as much independence as Michael has had himself. I also sincerely hope he never faces the battles Michael's family had to fight in order for the dog to be allowed on school transport!

    I received a copy of this book free from BookSneeze in return for writing a review, I was not obliged to write a good review and the opinions contained in this review are my own.
  3. Age: 25-34
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Wonderful Read
    August 1, 2011
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Their are those moments you remember in life for the rest of your years on earth. Those big moments that stay with you weather good or bad. On September 11,2001 is a day everybody always ask where were you on that day and it's one you know exactly where you were. It was the day terrorist took down the world trade center and killed hundreds of innocent people. In this book we go through the day from the view of a man that was in the building and lived to tell his story. His story is different though,his name Michael Hingson and he was born blind. I learned so much from this book. He goes back between telling of that day in the stairway coming out of the trade center and back to his childhood and growing up blind. He tells us what it was like growing up with no sight. This book made me think of what it must be like to grow up and live never seeing anything. Now take yourself to that horrible day and imagine trying to get out a falling building with no sight. He tells of him and guide dog getting out and one story touched me in it. A lady was afraid they were all going to die in the stairway and a group gaithered around her and gave her comfort and his guide dog nudged the womans hand and she petted the dog. It makes you truly see how smart dogs are and what a wonderful comfort and help they truly can be to people. This is a great read and one of the best accounts of a person who survived 9/11.

    I received this book from free for my honest review.
  4. Yoder, CO
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    A fascinating personal account of 9/11
    July 27, 2011
    Debra Brinkman
    Yoder, CO
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    On a whim, I requested Thunder Dog: The True Story of a Blind Man, His Guide Dog & the Triumphs of Trust at Ground Zero by Michael Hingson to review a week or so ago. It looked like it would be a fairly easy read, and that is what I was in the mood for.

    It turned out that it was gripping, compelling -- a real page-turner. Once I started it, I had a very hard time putting it down.

    The basic story -- Michael and his guide dog, Roselle, are at work one day nearly a decade ago, preparing for a sales presentation. Michael works on the 78th floor of the World Trade Center, and obviously (given the title) this day is going to be far from normal, as it is 9/11.

    An explosion rocks the building, and Michael and his co-worker get their clients to evacuate, while they shut some things down and finally head out themselves.

    The main narrative of Thunder Dog relates Michael and Roselle working together to get down 78 flights of stairs and away from the tower, which collapses shortly after they get out. Obviously, since Michael is the author, we know he is going to make it out. Still, I kept flipping page after page as I really wanted to find out more.

    Michael recalls earlier scenes in his life, so we learn about his childhood. He was born a couple of months early. That means he was treated like virtually every other preemie in that generation -- given excessive oxygen, causing his blindness. Michael tells about his childhood, his first guide dog, attending college, driving a car, flying a plane... and escaping Ground Zero.

    The book made me laugh. A lot. It made me cry. Towards the middle of the book, there were a couple sections told from the point of view of Michael's wife that I really appreciated.

    I will have my children read this when we get to really recent history. Because this story is incredibly inspiring, and it definitely brings an interesting point of view to 9/11.

    Disclaimer: As a Booksneeze Blogger, I did receive this as an ePub book from Thomas Nelson. No other compensation was received. For more about my take on reviews, visit my blog post here.
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