Good Sam RVer of the Year Award

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May 26, 2009

Richard Daniels and Old FellaWhen we at the Good Sam Club decided to start a new annual award, the Good Sam RVer of the Year, the choice was easy and totally unanimous.

Like many of you, we had been following the articles and postings on the online Forum about Richard Daniels of Waynesboro, Georgia and his rescued dog, Old Fella.

For those who don’t know about Richard, here’s the story. In 2005, he and his wife, Sue, spotted an old stray limping dog at a South Carolina campground. Apparently, the dog had lived there for 3 years, being fed by the park’s guests. Something about that dog kept haunting Richard, and he started chatting about him on the Good Sam Club’s online Forum with other RVers. They encouraged him to find the dog a home, and he went back to the campground and adopted the dog himself, naming him Old Fella.

Richard started updating his friends on the Forum about the dog’s adjustment to his new life. Words of encouragement and even financial assistance kept coming forward. And Richard learned from his dog….lessons like not to give up. Someday he would have a better life.

Inspired by Old Fella’s spirit, Richard founded the Old Fella Burke County Animal Rescue, which currently consists of a group of volunteers who foster stray pets. They transport many of them north to larger animal shelters where they have a better chance of getting adopted. These shelter officials are amazed at how well the Old Fella dogs behave as a result of their care and training.

And Richard continues to use the forum to help place rescued dogs. In 2008, he found Anna, a 3 legged retriever. On the forum, he found a Good Sam family who were willing to adopt her, but they lived in Spanaway, Washington, 2,800 miles from Waynesboro. By posting on the forum, Richard organized Anna’s transportation where other Good Sam members used their rigs to ferry her across the country. And after an amazing journey, Anna enjoys her new life in the Pacific Northwest.

Old Fella passed away last June, but Richard and Sue have opened their home to two other rescued dogs, Susie and Peaches. He is now devoting his efforts to building a dedicated animal shelter in Burke County, and continues to be rewarded by the love and devotion he receives from these fortunate rescued pets.

We’ve had a great time celebrating in Richard’s honor this year, but it’s now time to start looking for the second winner of this prestigious award. This year, we’re planning on narrowing a list down to 3 or 4 deserving recipients and posting their information on the Good Sam Club website, ( and asking members to vote for their favorite. So if you have any suggestions, just post them here. We’ll do the research — would just love to get your ideas!

Anna on her way to Washington
Anna on her way to Washington

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1 comment

  1. Carson

    This was such a heartwarming story and it was so sad when Old Fella passed on however, just stop and take a moment to look at the picture above and look at how Old Fella is looking at Mr. Daniels as saying “Thank You for Your Kindness and saving my life”. What a story we should all have more compassion for these helpless animals…Thank you Mr. Daniels