After dedicating 6 years of his life sniffing out explosive devices and protecting American troops in South Korea, 7-year-old German Shepherd, Rick, is enjoying a well-deserved break in retirement.
Retirement comes with some rest and relaxation time as well as an emotional reunion that will make anyone who has ever loved a dog tear up.
During their service together, U.S. Air Force Staff Sergenant Amanda Cubbage and Rick were inseparable, while they carried out more than 30 explosive sweeps which caused them to form a lasting bond. Together they patrolled for bombs, car bombs, performed security sweeps throughout the installation, as well as searched vehicles of important dignitaries, swept postal facilities and did sweeps along travel routes during bomb threats.
Unfortunately, after their tour together, they were separated, but it turns out it was only a temporary break.
“Rick is my partner, friend, brother, and son,” said Sgt. Cubbage in a statement. “I needed him more than anyone that isn’t a K9 handler would ever be able to understand. He was there for my happiest days in Korea and the saddest days that I ever had there.”
It is estimated that each military dog saves between 150-200 military service members lives, so their job doesn't go unnoticed.
So how do you honor a friend who has spent his life saving American troops overseas?