How To Help

Filmmaker Vision

I’ve archived hundreds of hours of news video footage as far back as the 1980s from all around the world. I possess relevant newspaper articles dating as early as the mid-1800s. I’ve collected numerous postcards, photographs and other memorabilia as old as the late 1800s/early 1900s. And, all these help tell a story surrounding the most controversial dog in our history.

Even though perceptions have dramatically changed after the Vick case towards dogs who came from alleged dogfighting raids, and breed specific legislation has become increasingly unpopular, there is still a faction of the public who keeps this topic surrounding dogs labeled “pit bull” in the news on the wrong side of history. My hope with this film project is it will serve as the final nail in the coffin, so we can begin to focus our attention on programs and initiatives that truly keep our communities safe with dogs, and celebrate everything good they do for us.

And, while that occurs, to tell a real life fairy-tale and pay homage to a once in a lifetime relationship between human and dog. This is for you, Preston. My soulmate.


“Once In A Lifetime” Pitch Video

Filmmaker Statement

Independent filmmaking presents many challenges, that requires an incredible amount of patience and persistence to see it through. Oftentimes just getting across the finish line is a daunting task, that tests your resilience and commitment. But, having a completed film is just the beginning; you still have to establish a distribution plan where it can be seen by the masses…and even then there’s no guarantees for the film’s success.

Independent film is just that – a film without a major studio and its financial backing and influence dictating the success. So, independent filmmakers usually have to wear multiple hats – Director, Producer, Editor, Social Media/Promotion, etc. And, there’s an enormous burden placed on the shoulders of the filmmaker, both financially as well as the months, or years, of time invested, required to see it through. If you are not passionate about the project, it will fail.

This is my 3rd film, and most important to date. So, given the ambitious goals this doc-series has set forth, to not only inform but also to create a domino effect to promote change, I am seeking supporters and other partnerships in a variety of roles to join me on this journey.

Please consider contributing to one of the below options, or contact us for other ideas on ways to partner together.


Below are just some of the ways you can support this film project and its mission. We are always open to other relationships, so if you don’t see an option that you’d like to take advantage of, contact us about your sponsorship or partnership ideas. We are also in search of Associate and Executive Producers.

Option 1

Get Active

Join our Project: EndBSL movement to repeal Breed Specific Legislation worldwide.

Serious inquiries only, please. Each person who registers will be required to participate in some way. A film credit will be given if you volunteer at least 2 hours per month.

To register, click the photo above or direct link below:

Option 2

One-Time Donation

There are several contributions in this list that give incentives for a financial contribution, but if you’d prefer to make a one-time “no strings attached” donation through PayPal or Venmo, we absolutely accept those, too.

PayPal Direct Link:
PayPal ID: riverfirefilms

Venmo Direct Link:
Venmo ID: riverfirefilms

Option 3

Wear Our Messaging

Shop our Spring store for t-shirts, hoodies and other merchandise. New designs will always be added.

To view merchandise, click the photo above or direct link below:

Option 4

Special “Thank You” Credit

“Once In a Lifetime” is a documentary series that pays tribute to the human-canine bond. This incentive puts your name in a special “Thank You” section during the ending credit roll to give thanks to those contributors who made this doc-series possible.

To purchase this incentive, click the photo above or direct link below:

Option 5

“Soulmate” Credit

“Once In a Lifetime” is a documentary series that pays tribute to the human-canine bond. This incentive displays a photograph or short video clip of your soulmate dog that appears during the ending credit roll.

*Limited space available. First come, first serve. Short video clip no more than 3-5 seconds long

To purchase this incentive, click the photo above or direct link below:

Option 6

Monthly Patreon Subscriber

Patreon is a subscription-based (monthly) site where you can support artists working on projects you believe in. For as little as $1/month you can help make this possible, and in return receive special incentives exclusive to subscribers.

To view those incentives, click the photo above or direct link below:

Brief Backstory:

The best word to sum up the last 1.5 years is – loss. On the afternoon of January 7, 2019, Preston had his first seizure. Factoring in his age (at this time – an estimated 14 years old), signs pointed to this being his final chapter. Preston was brought to his veterinarian the following morning to have blood tests run in an attempt to pinpoint the potential reason, which showed he was anemic, but he needed to see a specialist. He had another seizure in the morning of Friday, January 11th, so he was rushed to the veterinary hospital where he’d spend the weekend being passed around through each of the different departments.

This, while at the same time finishing the remaining three months of work before losing my job of 14.5 years (20 total in the telecom industry) due to my employer downsizing – cutting 1/3 of the nationwide workforce (estimated 40,000 positions). Preston’s outlook wasn’t immediately good. His age limited the amount of digging the specialists could do. But, slowly over the next couple months his health improved. His quality of life extended well past the original estimate, but started to descend again his final three weeks, before eventually passing on March 16, 2020.

In January 2020, at the age of 9, my second dog – Era, had surgery to remove several suspicious growths, which all came back benign. A full blood panel was done prior to surgery, where it showed some additional potential health concerns. In April, she again had surgery to remove a tumor found on her anal gland after the bloodwork came back, which was confirmed to be cancerous. A month after surgery, bloodwork was again done thinking the removed tumor would bring those levels back to normal, but it still showed an elevated calcium, indicating cancer has already spread to other areas. She began chemo treatment on July 29th, and all focus was now on her.

Then, on July 6th, at an estimated age of 11, my third dog – Fergie, was rushed to an emergency vet appointment after not eating and nearly collapsing in the yard the previous evening. Bloodwork was done and came back clean, but x-rays taken the following day showed two large masses – one in her chest and the other on her spleen. Sadly, she had to be humanely put to sleep on July 8th due to her quality of life taking a sudden and immediate nosedive.

I’ve been able to use the severance package and 401k earned from my previous employer to stay afloat during this time, but these continuous hits have drained those reserves, and the lack of opportunities to earn a living through the global COVID-19 pandemic have also handcuffed my ability to earn a living.

I’ve been able to use the severance package and 401k earned from my previous employer to stay afloat during this time, but these continuous hits have drained those reserves, and the lack of opportunities to earn a living through the global COVID-19 pandemic have also handcuffed my ability to earn a living.

Production for this doc-series – “Once In A Lifetime” may have officially begun about a week after Preston passed as a way to productively occupy my mind, but it’s hard to ignore this story of fate was being written each and every day over the last 12+ years. It was fate all along.



  • I love my dogs – all of them. Those still here, as well as those who have passed. In truth, I do this work for them, knowing it can and will positively impact other human beings and dogs. It is all inspired by my dogs, recognizing the purpose they have given me.
  • I spent well over $20k of my own money for my first documentary film – “Guilty Til Proven Innocent” when it was originally released in 2013…and that isn’t including the reboot we did years later (re-released in 2019). For my second documentary – “Train Ave“, I spent another $15k. Previously, while I decided to fund my projects myself for a variety of reasons – ranging from ensuring I have complete control over the entire process to just not comfortable soliciting funds, I have learned, the model I chose is not a sustainable one.


  • I have led and/or been part of numerous successful efforts in changing laws, specifically, but not limited to, repealing breed specific legislation.
  • I’ve done it before, and shown the ability to follow through on ambitious and complex creative projects from concept to completion. This is my 3rd documentary production (“Guilty Til Proven Innocent“, “Train Ave“), where I have been responsible for multiple (if not all) production roles (i.e. director, cinematographer, editor, etc.) to deliver the final film.
  • I pride myself on being thorough and detailed in my research as an independent filmmaker. The topics of my films are filled with nuance, often tackling human social issues that impact both humans and dogs or other animals.
  • My projects have been recognized by local and national media.


  • I have an impeccable record, often embracing and being an early adopter of progressive solution-based approaches before they become popular.
  • I am a critical thinker, who leaves no stone unturned in my research, with the ability to discuss sensitive topics in a rational way in the name of progress.
  • Because I am firm on accountability and transparency, I pride myself on being an open book – even at my own expense.
  • I have no “dirty laundry”.