TODAY   |  December 18, 2013

Dog saves blind owner after fall onto subway tracks

A heroic guide dog named Orlando is getting praise for saving his owner, a blind man named Cecil Williams, who fell onto the subway tracks in New York, and barking for help, which ultimately saved the man’s life.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> there's two stories this morning to leave you speechless. toronto and that.

>> let's see if willie can top that. he has a remarkable rescue all over social media this morning.

>> a scary one with a good ending. a scary moment for a visually impaired man here in new york city and for scores of witnesses. what could have been a tragedy, instead, a heartwarming tale all thanks to one courageous and loyal guide down.

>> reporter: he is lucky to be alive this morning and a lot of the credit goes to his brave seeing eye dog orlando .

>> he was wobbling and next thing you know he's on the track.

>> reporter: the visually impaired williams was waiting for the subway tuesday afternoon when he began to feel woozy and fell from the platform on to the tracks at this station in upper manhattan .

>> he got too close to the edge and all of a sudden he just fell right on the tracks. the dog was trying to hold him back.

>> reporter: the loyal orlando jumped down after williams and began barking with help. with the train fast approaching bystanders tried to alert the driver while also yelling at the fallen williams .

>> we kept telling him to stay down. that the train was already coming in.

>> reporter: the train did graze them but the alert conductor managed to slow down and they escaped without serious injury. williams is recovering telling the associated press, quote, the dog saved my life. meanwhile, the four legged hero made a brief appearance last night with the owner's girlfrie girlfriend.

>> i'm grateful to god.

>> reporter: who is also thankful for the bravery of man's best friend.

>> it has a happy ending for now but williams health insurance doesn't cover the cost of caring for a nonworking dog. he is set to retire sometime early next year so he could lose the dog the way things stand right now. obviously people wanted to know how they could help. we have this up on their facebook page. as soon as he tells us where he wants help to come from, what organization can help give money to keep orlando we're going to put it on our facebook page because a lot of you have been asking what you're going to do. knowing the american people , cecil is going to keep his dog.

>> especially during the holiday season . what a great way to show you care about other people.