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Face Transplant Recipient Soon Getting Guide Dog

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FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – Dallas Wiens is proof you can overcome almost anything.  The Fort Worth resident lost his face to a horrible accident and recently became the first in this country to receive a face transplant.

Wiens, who’s 26 now, said, “I feel fantastic.”

He’s come a long way on his road to recovery. But, he wants to go further.

“I am traveling quite a lot,” he admitted.

It was nearly three years ago that Wiens lost his face to a high voltage electrical line.

In March, surgeons gave him a new one. And now, even though he still can’t see, he has new eyes.

“They are prosthetic eyes. They fit directly inside the eyelids,” he explained.

Wiens eyes were hazel before he lost them. The color was too difficult to duplicate. So, Wiens chose a new color, steel blue.

“How many times in your life do you get to choose the color of your eyes?” he asked.

What he needs now is a new dog, a “Leader Dog” for the blind. “Having a guide dog would add for independence I currently don’t have,” he said.

Tammy Freeman can’t imagine living without hers, a black lab named “Vince.”

“He helps you get to your destination easier to where you’re not stressing out,” she said.

The cost to train the dog and his new master can run as much as $40,000 dollars.   The Lions Club gave Freeman her dog. They want to give one to Wiens.

“We are honored to support his cause, provide him with a Leader Dog and be his sponsor club,” Ann Swindoll.

Swindoll is the President of the Southlake Lions Club. She said they’re raffling a Harley to offset the cost of Dallas’ Leader Dog.

The bike is a 2011 Chrome Yellow Heritage Softail Classic valued at $17,000.  It’s currently on display at Adam Smith’s Texas Harley in Bedford, where Dallas Wiens will pick the winning raffle ticket Saturday, October 1st at 1pm.

Raffle tickets are $50.00 a piece or three for $100.00.

There’s also a Bike Run.  For information on how to enter the Bike Run or to purchase a raffle ticket, log on to www.southlakelions.com.

They’re hoping someone looking for their next big adventure will help Dallas Wiens with his.

“I am very much looking forward to this,” Wiens said.