Captain Jack rules Army roost

Captain Jack (Jimmy)

In one Army home, a rescued dog named Captain Jack rules the roost with his calm demeanor and winning personality. His unlikely hero is an Army veteran who was never too excited about having dogs in the first place. Army takes teen recruit around the world At the age of 18, Agustin - who goes by Jimmy - joined the Army to strike out on his own and to care for his young family. But his military service left very little family time; he was deployed immediately after basic training, including to Bosnia and Korea on what he affectionately calls "an all expenses paid trip." Once his tour of duty … [Read more...]

Navy gunner’s four-legged mate sweet as honey

Honey

One Navy gunner's mate found his own new mate: an ex-stray named Honey. This is his story as told by his wife, Heather. My husband Eddie is currently in the field and he's not much of a story teller, so I figured I would share our pet adoption story. A dog named Diesel makes a house a home Eddie has been in the military about 10 years and we have been married almost eight years. We also just bought our first house a little over a year ago and we are loving it. We waited many years to get a dog, and finally got one after Eddie was in a bad accident and had to get up and start walking again. … [Read more...]

A letter of thanks for three lives transformed

Stephanie and Fly

This letter of thanks is from Stephanie, a Marine Corps veteran and Pets for Patriots member, to our founder and executive director, Beth Zimmerman. Sometimes all it takes is a dog to forever transform the lives of those around her.  Hi Beth, I know I've thanked you plenty over the phone, but wanted to write you so that anytime your job gets difficult you can read this and have some comfort in knowing that you've greatly affected three lives - [starting with] the life of our new dog, Fly, an eight month-old Border Collie that was rescued by your partner in Utah, Canines With a … [Read more...]

Navy retiree living the life of Riley

Riley and AJ

For one Navy retiree, the expression "living the life of Riley" is life imitating art, but with a twist. After traveling the world and then retiring from the Navy in 2010, AJ was happy to find a forever home for his family in an old farmstead in upstate New York. “I served for 22 years; retired as a Commander. My service experiences included tours on surface warships, in staff positions in Washington D.C., and an overseas tour in Cairo, Egypt.” That tour in Cairo proved to be AJ’s most memorable experience while serving in the Navy, as he took on the challenge of residing there with his … [Read more...]

From Afghanistan veterans, with love: Molly’s story

Jacqueline, Mike and Molly

From Florida to the war in Afghanistan, this is the story of two veterans who fell in love - with each other and with a lovable mutt named Molly. From Afghanistan, with love Mike and I both serve in the Florida Army National Guard together and met while deployed to Afghanistan in 2005. We later began dating after returning home, and four short years later and another deployment, we finally got married. Unfortunately, a few months after, Charlie - Mikes’ adoring Lab who had anxiously awaited his return after three deployments - sadly passed away after 12 faithful years. After a few months … [Read more...]

Anchors away for Navy couple and rescued pitbull

Wes, Vic and Bowser

It's anchors away for a Navy husband-and-wife team and their rescued pitbull, Bowser.  Wes is a public affairs officer with the Navy reserves and his wife, Victoria - who goes by Vic - a Navy nurse. Shortly after celebrating their first wedding anniversary and with the prospect of children many years down the road, the couple decided to adopt a dog because they "wanted a companion to love and to love us back."  From Texas to Virginia, with love Both Wes and Vic came from Texas, but that's about the only similarity in their nascent military careers. Wes was commissioned from the University … [Read more...]

Navy family sails high with rescued dog at helm

Macy and Tyler

Deployment can be tough on Navy and other military families, but a companion pet can make for smoother sailing. This is the experience of one Pets for Patriots adopter who decided to adopt a shelter dog to give his wife comfort when he deploys out to sea. Tyler is a 23 year-old active duty member of the United States Navy. He joined the service six years ago and has been stationed in San Diego on the USS Peleliu LHA-5, an amphibious assault ship. He served three deployments, one humanitarian mission and two West Pacific missions, earning a Navy Achievement Medal during his second … [Read more...]

Marine adopts adult dog to start his family

Wesley and Sass doing homework

An adult dog reminds one Marine of his boyhood, and a family tradition is reborn with the help of Pets for Patriots. “I always had a dog growing up,” says Wesley, a Marine Reservist living in upstate New York. “When I returned home from deployment and got married, I decided it was time to restart that tradition.” He and his wife, Paige, hope to have kids one day. Wesley believes it’s important for his children to have the same experience that he had growing up by having pets around the house.  Wesley served six years with the U.S. Marine Corps. Stationed in Syracuse, New York, he was … [Read more...]

Adopted pet takes bite out of veteran’s depression

Michael and Paco 1

Sometimes the antidote to loneliness and isolation is as simple as shelter pet adoption. For one Navy veteran suffering from depression, a homeless dog was just what the doctor ordered. Michael joined the Navy to get an education and to travel the world. Still on active duty, he has literally been around the world and back again, recently landing coveted orders which brought him back to his hometown in Michigan. Despite a successful naval career spanning some 18 years which included many academic and service awards and accolades – including Command Sailor of the Year in 2007 when he served at … [Read more...]

Shepherd rescue joins Coast Guard veteran’s ‘wild bunch’

blake-will-1

For one particular Coast Guard veteran, a quirky, adopted Shepherd dog made his family's 'wild bunch' just a little bit more wild - and joyful.  For the past 23 years, Will has been working as a dispatcher for the Detroit police and fire departments. During his prior Coast Guard service, he was stationed in Hawaii, traveled to Alaska on patrol, attended the Navy Electronics School near Chicago and served on a Lake Erie, Ohio search-and-rescue team. Will always had pets growing up, usually multiple cats and dogs at the same time. One of his memories is about Brownie, a German Shepherd Saint … [Read more...]

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