When David Robert Wetzel, or Bob as he was known within his community, passed away in December of 2014 at the age of 80, he left behind an incredible legacy. The Urbana, Ohio resident left instructions that the proceeds from the sale of his estate, which totaled $3 million, be put towards funding the establishment and operation of the Champaign County Animal Welfare League.
In his will, Bob Wetzel requested the animal shelter be located on a secluded farm and modeled after the Animal Welfare League of Clark County. His intentions were to offer Champaign County an animal preserve that would serve as a pet cemetery, rehabilitation center for unwanted pets, a dog training grounds, and a place where animals could be properly cared for until being adopted into there forever homes.
Bob, who was described in his obituary as “an animal advocate,” was survived by no immediate family, and chose to use the sum of his life's work to benefit a cause close to his heart. He had a vision to create a place where families could adopt a new pet, or find comfort upon losing one — a place where people could come with their furry companions and receive guidance or simply wander the beautiful grounds. The acreage, which features ponds, trails, dog parks, and soon, picnic tables, perfectly captures Bob’s dream. This generosity of Bob Wetzel will surely be appreciated for many years to come!
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