Mardu has been involved with animal rescue for over 20 years. In addition she has fostered many dogs and cats placing them in their forever homes. During this time, she has grown her pet family to include 4 dogs and 1 cat. You can’t foster all these years and not be a foster fail a couple of times!
On May 1, 2014, Mardu Lydick, along with her husband Ron, launched the Ventura County, CA Chapter of Pets For Vets (PFV VCC). PFV VCC provided professionally trained companion shelter dogs for our local veterans who suffer from combat PTS(D), TBI, Anxiety and Depression. Over the next 4 years, they successfully built a strong and experienced team of talented volunteers that included several professional dog trainers. One of the trainers, Bob Horrell – a Vietnam Veteran, stepped up to manage the dedicated dog training teams. Both Mardu & Bob became active members in the surrounding Ventura County, CA Military/Veteran Community and realized that there was a much larger need for expanded therapeutic pet support services.
So in May 2018, Mardu along with Bob Horrell, Co-Founded the non profit Military Animal Project (MAP). Mardu is the Executive Director and runs the day to day business needs of MAP managing the dedicated team of volunteers who ensure that the organization successfully meets their goals – Healing Vets with Professionally Trained Pets!
Mardu Lydick has a BA in Radio/TV Broadcasting with a concentration in Film. She spent over 25 years as a Media Sales and Marketing Executive working with Home Entertainment accounts managing their media manufacturing of CD, DVD, Blu Ray, packaging and fulfillment/distribution.
Mardu and her family live in Carson City, NV
Bob Horrell enlisted in the United States Navy in October 1964, serving two tours of duty in Vietnam from 1966 to 1968, where he was part of Operation Market Time. His assignments included identifying and eliminating hostile vessels transporting arms from North Vietnam to South Vietnam via the river deltas.
Upon leaving the Navy in October 1968, Bob experienced difficulty entering civilian life after enduring traumatic events of the war. It was shortly after that time he realized working with animals was therapeutic, which greatly helped him in coping with PTS(D) – Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. In 2015, he discovered the Ventura County, CA Chapter of Pets For Vets and began volunteering as a dog trainer.
On May 7, 2018, Bob became the Co-Founder and Director of Operations for Military Animal Project. Bob meets with every veteran that applies for a dog along with the trainer assigned to facilitate essential dialog enabling the organization to understand each veteran’s special needs. He also assists in searching for appropriate dogs for the veterans and consulting when training issues arise.
Bob lives with his family in Acton, CA
It was Christmas 2013 when Ron read a newspaper article about how a national organization, Pets For Vets, was providing companion trained shelter pets for veterans with PTS and TBI as a means of healing. Since Ron is the son and stepson of two military veterans – Navy and Army respectively as well as his being classified 1A by Selective Service – he knew he would be serving in the Armed Forces. During his time in ROTC, his draft number was high enough that he was not called to serve in the Vietnam war. After much research and consideration, Ron along with his wife, Mardu, decided to launched the Ventura County, CA Chapter of Pets For Vets (PFV VCC) on May 1, 2014.
They spent the next 4 years building a talented team of volunteers, successfully matching trained dogs for veterans and establishing a strong reputation in the Ventura County, CA military veteran community. During this time, it became more and more apparent that there was a genuine need for expanded services using multiple therapeutic pet programs. On May 7, 2018, Military Animal Project was formed to fill this need.
Ron has a B.S. in Mathematics from Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo. In addition, he has 40 years experience in successfully owning two Southern California companies. He is currently the President/CEO of Marathon Services a copier rental, sales, lease and service company in Van Nuys, CA.
Ron and his family live in Carson City, NV
SECRETARY/EQUINE BUDDIES PROGRAM DIRECTOR
Linda Horrell was born in Sheridan, Wyoming the daughter of a Cowboy Rancher. Linda’s passion for horses began when her Grandad introduced her to riding at age 5. Due to his physical impairments, Linda was tasked with riding the colts and “restarts” at age 7. Throughout her years of riding, teaching and training she has attended clinics with such greats as Buck Brannaman, Tom Dorrance, Greg Eliel and Ray Hunt amongst many others.
Linda became a Core Member, Senior Instructor and North County Area Leader for the Los Angeles County Department of Animal Care and Control’s Equine Response Team (LACDACCERT) from 2002 – 2014 when she retired. As the Senior Instructor, she was responsible for training all new recruits, Animal Control Officers, and the Sheriff Dept. Mounted Enforcement Detail Officers. When activated, Linda handled Operations for all major Southern California fires from 2001-2014 and personally evacuated over 100 animals (including horses, other livestock and exotics). In 2006 & 2008, she was honored at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion as Volunteer of the Year by LACDACCERT & Los Angeles County Board of Supervisor for her dedication and commitment to the safety & evacuation education of horses and their owners.
In 2014 she and her husband Bob Horrell became hosts and sponsors for Greg Eliel’s Horsemanship Clinics (www.GregEliel.com) and Veteran Barn Door Project (VBDP) at their Acton, CA ranch. Through the wonderful work of VBDP, MAP’s Equine Buddies Program (EBP) was developed and launched in 2018. Linda is a member of MAP’s Board Of Directors and the EBP Director managing all aspects of the program.
Linda lives and breathes Winston Churchill’s (as well as her Grandad’s) words…
“The outside of the horse is good for the inside of the man”.
Linda lives with her family in Acton, CA.