The lucky military Labrador is scheduled to meet Anthony Marquez in Jackson Springs, North Carolina!
The Marine veterans haven’t seen each other for almost three years when Marquez got off a plane in California and the black Lab came back to her military contractor.
“I didn’t think I would ever see her again,” said Anthony.
Improvised explosive device-sniffing dogs were a need in 2004 when hidden explosives became a threat in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The heroic pooches complete a five-week training program with their handlers, where they are trained to deploy with infantrymen and Marines in other combat specialties, before going into the field.
“We were close,” Marquez said. “She went through everything I did.
“She is a smart dog. She obeyed. She did what I told her to do.”
Marquez began his journey to find Allie about two months ago. And as it turns out, program honchos had been waiting for his call.
“All this time, they already had me down as the one who was going to adopt her because I was her first handler,” he said. “First handlers get first choice.”
The Marines recently announced that the military working-dog program is ending as the combat operations wind down in Afghanistan.
All of the roughly 130 dogs that are stateside in training or downrange will be adopted out by the first quarter of 2015, according to Bill Childress, head of the Marines MWD program.
Marquez said he will be driving to North Carolina with his brother, who plans to film the reunion of the two buddies.
His sister, Rachel Herrera, believes the reunion will be therapeutic.
“I also pray Allie will give him new meaning to life and bring joy and light where so much darkness resides,” said Rachel.
We are surely excited about the reunion video!
Image and article source: Owasso World