Ramapo Bergen Animal Refuge, Inc. (RBARI) has long held a special place in Paramus Police Detective Glenn Pagano's heart.
In 2008, the rescue brought him his first dog, Kylie, a brindle pitbull found on the streets of Newark. At the time, Pagano wasn't looking for a dog, but he agreed to foster Kylie for RBARI.
A week later, he adopted her.
Pagano says RBARI changed his life, which is why he chose the organization as the beneficiary for last week's Battle of the Warriors.
On Friday, the Paramus PBA presented RBARI with a $3,000 check from funds raised.
"My eyes and heart never would have been opened to life with a dog if it wasn't for RBARI," said Pagano, who adopted his new dog Cali after losing Kylie in 2016.
"It awakens your soul to a lot of things in life."
Battle of the Warriors was held at the Parisi Speed School in Fair Lawn last Saturday. It was organized in part by the gym's owner Rich Sadiv, who trains Pagano and other police officers from across Bergen County in the Training For Warriors fitness class several times a week.
The event was the driving force behind the Paramus PBA's donation.
RBARI's president of the board Steven Goldstein said the gesture speaks volumes to his organization.
"We get no funding from anywhere but donations," he said. "So when people go out of their way to raise money for us, it's incredible."
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