In 2008, Richard was diagnosed with a rare blood cancer called Multiple Myeloma, related to his time in Vietnam. At the time, he was given 3 years to live. Animals were the catalyst for change in his life. They were messengers, speaking of a universe previously unknown to him. They thinned the veil and allowed him to see what had been hidden. The lessons they taught led to his first published book, Unspoken Messages. That book led to other people telling Richard about their experiences with the animal kingdom, which birthed the idea for this book. Richard is a two-tour veteran of the Vietnam war. He is retired from the Kentucky State Police after a twenty-eight-year career in law enforcement. He also owned and operated an equine boarding and training facility in his hometown of Elizabethtown, Kentucky for twenty years. His life has been spent in the company of animals. He strongly believes that animals and the peace their messages brought him are the reason he is still here today. They collectively removed fear from the journey.