Behind McGuire Veterans Hospital in Richmond, VA., a K-9 with two Purple Hearts, Yeager, is helping Marine Sgt. David Tupper heal from combat-related injuries suffered in Afghanistan.
K-9s are an integral part of America’s armed forces, both down range and at home. Yeager, a black Labrador retriever who has been awarded two Purple Hearts over one tour in Iraq and 2 tours in Afghanistan, saved countless lives.
Now the two heroes are back stateside, the Marine and the K-9 helping each other heal.
WKTR News Channel 3 Matt Knight writes:
On Yeager’s last deployment, his handler, Lance Corporal Abraham Tarwoe, was killed by a roadside bomb. Yeager also took shrapnel in his nose and chest and lost part of an ear.
WKTR’s Rob Cardwell noted:
At Lance Cpl. Tarwoe’s memorial, Yeager refused to leave the cross decorated with his helmet and gear.
“They had to pull him away,” said Tupper. ”Since he was also injured, it was kind of like a two-way street. He lost his handler, but was going through recover with it.”
Now Yeager won’t leave Tupper’s side.
While war took something away from these two loyal heroes to our country, loyalty is helping heal their pain.
“Semper Fi”, said Tupper. “Always faithful. We pass that along.”
Semper Fi and thank-you for your service Marine Sgt. David Tupper and K-9 Yeager.
A nation is indebted.
Editor’s note: Commemorative awards have been given to K-9’s. See “Are working dogs eligible for the Purple Heart?“