Tag Archives: NEADS

Dancer’s graduation

Hello to everyone,

I know when it has been a while since last I posted when Lisa starts reminding me it’s time to get writing. The truth is it’s difficult for me to write a post. I often feel like I am writing the same things over and over again. I also don’t want to come across as depressing or complaining. In reality, my days are very mundane and often filled with quiet sadness. There are, however, small glimmers of light in my dark days. Getting to call Lisa is a highlight of my day. Also, getting visits from my family and friends. And probably the biggest highlight has always been working with the dogs.

I don’t mean to sound depressing or ungrateful for the wonderful things happening in my case. All of the advances in my case are remarkable. And all of the positive attention is incredible. It’s just that I’m tired. Twenty years is a long time. Twenty years is a VERY long time. It can be hard to stay positive. I have to constantly remind myself of the wonderful family and friends I have that love and support me. Or the amazing legal team I have working diligently to bring me home. And all of the incredible support we received after the article came out in Boston Magazine. I have so much more than so many others. I have hope. I hope for a future. I am grateful. I really am. It can just be very hard to fight off the negative influences and the darkness that fills my every day of being in prison for a crime I did not commit. It’s hard.

Brian and Dancer during the dog days of summer 2015

Brian and Dancer during the dog days of summer 2015

I am also struggling right now with the loss of my dog. Yes, Dancer has finally graduated. It is bitter sweet. I’ve known all along that the goal was to train her for a disabled person and that she would ultimately leave to change someone’s life. Well, on February 10th it happened. After raising and training her for 15 months, Dancer left to go to her forever home. Dancer was matched with a 15 year-old autistic girl. Dancer will work with the girl as a social dog to give her confidence in social situations. I am very proud of her. I was extremely fortunate to meet the mother of the disabled girl who received Dancer. At a meet-and-greet at the prison, the child’s mother came in to meet the man who trained the dog for her daughter. I was extremely honored. It was very emotional. She brought Dancer in with her and I got to see her. I have to admit; I lost control of my emotions and made a fool of myself. I took a picture with Dancer and the poor thing was freaked out at how emotional I was. Still, all and all it was an amazing experience and I was grateful for the opportunity to meet Dancer’s new mommy and to see her again. I know that Dancer will bring happiness and joy to that family’s lives and that I had a small part to play in it. I am honored, but I will miss her.

Dancer's graduation to the red vest-full service dog status March 1, 2016

Dancer’s graduation to the red vest-full service dog status:  March 1, 2016

As always I want to thank everyone for their love and support. Lisa reads your comments to me every day. Thank you for your kind encouragement and kind words. I smile as I hear them and I love and appreciate every word.

We continue to struggle in our fight. We sometimes stumble and merely survive one more day. But one thing is for sure, every day brings us one day closer…


June 2015

Hey Everybody,

A quick hello to update everyone…

First, I want to point out that June has always been a very notable month for birthdays in my family. This month we celebrate some special women who are very important to me because of how each of them touch my life each and every day.

The first birthday we celebrate in my mother’s, Joyce. My mom has always been my biggest cheerleader. Her unconditional love has always given me a safe place to land. No matter how old I get, she still looks at me as her little boy. My mother has never wavered in her belief in me and every day provides me with an example of unquestionable and unrelenting faith. I love you mom.

Amber Peixoto

Baby Amber


Next is my beautiful daughter, Amber. My jewel. My heart. My baby. I still remember the day she was born as if it were yesterday. I was hers from the moment she first looked up at me and smiled. I fell in love. I forever will be the very first man to fall victim to her charm. No matter what, I will always love you Amber.


Then is Lisa’s mom, Jeanette. She was taken from her family far too soon, but she still is loved and forever will be missed. Though I never had the privilege to meet her, I like to believe that she would approve of me for her daughter. I believe in my heart that when I see her daughter’s sincerity and sensitivity, love and understanding, her giving and hopeful spirit, I am seeing the qualities given to her from her mother. I know she would be proud of you Lisa. I believe she gave you to me long ago, and you have been looking for me ever since.

And then there is my aunt Janice. She is also my Godmother and has always been there for me when I needed a little extra love. As my mother’s sister, she always cared for me as if I were her own. I will always love and appreciate you for that.

Happy birthday to all of you. You are all very special to me and continue to touch my life in innumerable and profound ways. I love you all.

Brian, Mom and Dancer, May 2015

Brian, mom and Dancer, May 2015

An update about Dancer, the wonderful yellow lab I have been training for the NEADS service dog program. Dancer has had her twelve month evaluation at the NEADS facility, and I am happy to announce that she has been chosen to become a Therapy Dog. As such, she will be matched with a permanent handler who works as a physical and occupational therapist. Dancer will be her handler’s therapeutic partner working with children with physical and psychological disabilities. One of the ways that Dancer will work with her handler is by assisting children with social disorders by motivating them to interact socially as part of their therapy. In addition, often, without a child’s knowledge, a therapy dog can encourage a physically disabled child to use their hands, arms and legs, enhancing their flexibility and dexterity by playing tug and catch, as well as walking and brushing the dog. Now that Dancer has been evaluated, I can customize her training, preparing her for life as a Therapy Dog. We are hoping to have her placed with a client by the end of the summer.

Last month I told you a little about Jennifer Fitzgerald, an attorney from Rhode Island who contacted us offering her help. As I stated previously, Jen has joined our team and has been working nonstop on my case. Jen has done something that no other attorney has ever done: she has reviewed every single document, police report, transcript and brief ever filed in this case. Her meticulous review of every document related to the case has led to further actual investigation which has revealed a whole host of new issues which made the entire trial fundamentally unfair right from the start. What Jen has uncovered is nothing short of remarkable. We call her Supergirl!  Please stay tuned…I am told that there will be updates made to our website soon.

Finally, I want to wish my dad a Happy Father’s Day. My father is a man that I have grown to respect as a good, honest man who influences my decision making every day. He inspires me to be the best I can and to remember the importance of family. Happy Father’s Day, Dad.

I want to thank everyone for their continued messages of support. They really do keep me positive and hopeful for the future. Remember to be thankful for what you have and never miss an opportunity to tell those who are important to you that you love them. Now, more than ever, I believe we are One Day Closer…

February 2015

February 2015

Hello to everybody,

I must begin by thanking everyone for their amazing support and all of the wonderful comments on the website and the new Facebook page. When Sarah, from Injustice Anywhere asked if they could create a Facebook page for me I was hesitant. I have never seen a Facebook page and, admittedly, don’t fully understand how it all works. But for that matter, I’ve never seen a website, laptop or smartphone either. However, since the Facebook page was created I’ve been told of the many people who have left the most extraordinarily supportive messages. I have also been told of the messages from some special people from my past who I thought had forgotten about me. Every night, on the phone, Lisa reads me your personal messages and conversations; with tears in our eyes we talk about your beautiful words of support and encouragement. Your comments warm our hearts and bring us strength and hope. Personally, from us to you, thank you.

I want to take a moment to send a special hello to some old friends, Randy, John, Tina, Jimmy, Heather, Patricia, Steve, Manny & Becky, Christine, Melissa, Richard, Laurie and Mitch. I love you all. It’s been wonderful to hear from you. I have been told of your support and kind words. It touches me deeply. As I was read some of the old stories you shared on Facebook and the website I smiled warmly. It brought me back to happier times. Thank you. I miss you all.

I also want to tell everyone about a very special event I had the privilege to attend. We had two more dogs at the prison graduate the NEADS dog training program and be placed with clients. Honey, a yellow lab, and Eddie, a black lab, were placed with veterans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). The two veterans came into the prison to meet the men who trained their dogs. In a “meet and greet” event, attended by all the men in the dog program, Correctional Officers and other staff, and the Superintendent, these men came to thank US for OUR service. Amazing! Meeting these men, both Army veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, was awe inspiring. They spoke about their multiple tours in the Middle East and the disabilities they returned home with. Both soldiers explained how their new service dogs will give them more freedom and mobility in their daily lives. Moreover, the companionship and confidence their dogs give them, they explained, is immeasurable. One of the veterans, with tears in his eyes, told us about his combat experience and how it often leaves him debilitated. He explained to us that his new service dog, Honey, already senses his trepidation and moves in to bring him comfort. The other veteran explained that he wakes in the middle of the night with night terrors, but Eddie jumps on his bed and reassures him that the perimeter is secure.

I consider myself privileged to have met these men and I am honored to have played a small part in providing them with a new service dog and lifelong companion.

Brian and Dancer January 2015

Brian and Dancer January 2015

Dancer’s training is going well. She is now nine months old and progressing steadily. Dancer now knows all of the obedience and task commands and we are now working on proofing these commands in different areas and with distractions. I continue to be proud of her and will update you on her progress.

To my family, my daughter, and Lisa, I love you all and miss you very much. Thank you once again to everyone on the team fighting to bring me home. I never lose hope and faith because of all of you. Every day brings us one day closer…



November, 2014

Hello to all,

I hope everyone is well. For myself, I am staying positive and still have dreams for a better future.

I can’t thank everyone enough for their kind words and supportive comments. It was especially wonderful to hear from Randy, Moe and Manny. Thank you to everyone who sent a message of encouragement and support. Whether you realize it or not, your words give my whole family strength to keep fighting during those dark times when it feels all is lost. Thank you.

I have some wonderful news. Lily, the beautiful, black lab I worked with over the last few months, has been placed with a client. Lily was matched with a 15 year old boy who lives with his family in New Mexico. This brave young man faces terrible medical challenges that Lily will be eager and capable of assisting him through every day.  Among other things, his needs include daily breathing treatments, chest therapy, and weekly IV’s.  Lily will enrich his life by assisting him with turning on and off lights and carrying emergency response equipment in her backpack. She will also help him with stability and balance; and, most importantly, she will give him love and companionship. Although I will miss Lily, I am very proud of her. I am honored to have played a part in her training and I know that she will change that young boy’s life in more ways then can be imagined. Lily’s greatest gift is unconditional love. Good luck and best wishes to Lily and her new family. Lily was featured on a recent episode of Chronicle.

Brian with Dancer, November 2014

Brian with Dancer, November 2014

However, looking towards the future, I now have the amazing privilege of training a beautiful Fox Red Labrador. Her name is Dancer. She’s 5 months old and the most lovable creature I have ever met. When you reach down to pet her, she collapses in eager anticipation of a belly rub. She has the most amazing, red coat and expressive, brown eyes. Dancer is what is called a “soft dog.” She is a timid puppy and learns very slowly. However, soft dogs often make the best service dogs. It will be an amazing journey training her to become a NEADS service dog. I will keep everyone updated on her progress.

I want to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving. Please be thankful for all that you have. Take time to appreciate your family, and the ability to be with them. Do not take for granted your freedom. For me, I will be thankful for my family, my beautiful daughter Amber, and my love, Lisa. I will also be thankful for my freedom of mind and spirit, two things that cannot be taken from me. I will not let where I am define me or let my imprisonment change who I am in my heart.

Please remember, everyday brings us One Day Closer



Hello once again.

Let me begin this post by sending a thank you to Bruce Fischer and everyone at Injustice Anywhere. The internet radio interview earlier this month was amazing. We greatly appreciate the fact that Injustice Anywhere chose to profile our story and that they ultimately decided to endorse my case. Thank you. I would also like to send out a very special thank you to Lisa, our web administrator and advocate. She was awesome! On behalf of me and my whole family, we love you Lisa. Although she was very nervous, she did a sensational job during the interview. She is my hero and best friend. Lisa, you are amazing.

And then there is my mom and daughter…as difficult as it can be for me to be reminded of how all of this has affected my family, I can’t tell you how much it means to me to have ALL of their love and support. All of my family, friends, and other supporters give me strength to get through each day. To Amber…I am sorry. I am sorry for all you have had to endure. I am sorry that through no fault of your own, you have gone without so much. In spite of all the difficulties and obstacles you have had to face throughout your childhood, you have become a beautiful, smart, sensitive and strong young woman. You have CHOSEN to be happy and to have hope. I am so proud of you. I love you.

Brian, Amber, and Lily  September 2014

Brian, Amber, and Lily
September 2014

In my last post I promised updates on Lily, the Black Lab I have been blessed to have an opportunity to train as a NEADS service dog. She is great and very smart. She knows all 54 commands necessary to become a service dog. I am looking forward to her being placed with a client that needs her. She is scheduled to graduate sometime next month. I am sure Lily will change, as well as enrich someone’s life. This past weekend Amber and I took a picture with Lily in the prison’s visitation center. Lily will stay with us in our hearts.

I would like to tell you all about one of the best, most rewarding parts of the NEADS Prison Partnership Program. Every few months there is a dog graduation. Once a service dog has completed their training and has been placed with a client, the clients come into the prison to meet the men that trained their dogs. This past week I had the privilege to attend the most recent graduation ceremony here at the prison. I had the honor to meet three disabled veterans, diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). The three soldiers came to the facility with their newly placed dogs to meet us and thank us personally for training their dogs. Each of them explained how their dog will change their lives, and what having a service dog means to them. It was amazing. For us, the trainers, the graduation brings the whole process full circle. It can be very difficult for us to be given a new puppy who knows nothing, training her and take care of her for up to 18 months, then ultimately having to watch her leave to be placed with a client. Getting to meet the person who has gotten her…seeing their smile and love for their new service dog, makes it all worth while.

Thank you once again to everyone for their love and support.                                                 Everyday brings us One Day Closer…