Crossfit gym raises money for Smoky Mountain Service Dogs

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MARYVILLE, Tenn. There are many types of strength. When it comes to Volunteer Spirit it's usually inner strength.

"If you're really tough you do it in a 20lb vest," says Amanda Stone who works out at Crossfit Pistol Creek. "We're all dedicated to helping people live healthier life-styles, and being encouraging of others to do that."

A dog reminds these competitors why they're working so hard to finish The Murph Challenge on Memorial Day.

The Murph is no easy task. There's 200 pushups, 300 squats, two one mile runs, a hundred of these.

Named after Lt. Michael Murphy, a Navy Seal killed by Taliban fighters in Afghanistan, the challenge raises money for the scholarship foundation in his name.

"These dogs are only trained to help veterans," says Stone.

At Crossfit Pistol Creek, a portion of the money raised also goes to Smoky Mountain Service Dogs.

"When we present a dog to a veteran at no cost to the veteran we have between $20,000-$25,000 invested in that dog," says Frank Kitchens with Smoky Mountain Service Dogs.

That's 15 to 18 hundred hours of training with dogs all donated by Volunteer Trainers. Just one reason this gym chose to give to this organization on Memorial Day.

"Most of their money goes directly back to the organization to help just veterans," says Stone.

For the disabled veterans who get one of these dogs, the sweat, training, and money put in is invaluable.

"They have their battle buddy. Which is one of the things they miss, especially if they've been severely injured. They miss their buddies," says Kitchens.

"Oh, they definitely have Volunteer Spirit, plus they've got some chops on them too! (laughs)"

The Pistol Creek Crossfit Gym was able to raise several hundreds of dollars for Smoky Mountain Service Dogs.