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The 2021 Run For The Animals is Dedicated in Memory of Tommie


Many of you already know Tommie’s story,

but for those of you who don’t,

Tommie’s story is both difficult to write and reflect upon...



On February 10, 2019, a two year old bridle pit bull, named Choo Choo (later re-named Tommie),

was found tied to a fence at the Abner Clay Park in Richmond, Virginia.

He had been doused with a flammable liquid and set on fire.

He suffered burns to 40% of his body and sadly after five days, he succumbed to his injuries.

Richmond Animal Care and Control (RACC) made this release at the time of his passing:

I’m so very sorry to share that Tommie just passed away. He had just finished having his bandages changed and stopped breathing; his body simply gave out. Tommie was pain-free and surrounded by people that loved him when he passed. Needless to say, we are all devastated and angry and sad and terribly disappointed. I want to say thank you to everyone at Virginia Veterinary Center and the VCU Evans-Haynes Burn Center for loving Tommie and fighting so hard to save him … We remain #teamtommie.

Jyahshal Hill, 20, the perpetrator, took a plea agreement and the court ordered him 5 years in prison, without the possibility of parole, 3 years post-release court supervision and barred him from owning or possessing animals for his life.

Public anger and outrage over Tommie’s horrific abuse and subsequent death,

prompted Virginia law-makers to pass legislation dubbed “Tommie’s Law,”

which made animal cruelty a “Class 6 Felony” in Virginia.


RACC worked to establish “Tommie’s Fund.” This fund helps with emergency medical cost at shelters across the Commonwealth of Virginia.

RACC also worked with Delegate Jeff Bourne to get a bill introduced and passed by the VA General Assembly designating a “Team Tommie” license plate.

A portion of each plate’s annual fee goes to support Tommie’s Fund.

You can honor Tommie and help other shelter animals by donating to Tommie’s Fund at ""

or by purchasing your “Team Tommie” license plate at ""


Run Free Tommie Y

We remain,

# Team Tommie



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