The bond between a loving responsible owner and his or her pet is unbreakable, and a living example of this, is the relationship between Marine Sgt. Mark Daniels and his military German shepherd named Aura.
On June 8, 2013, Marine Sgt. Daniels and Aura were injured in Afghanistan while serving their country. They were traveling inside a mine resistant ambush protected vehicle (MRAP) when a 200 lbs. explosive was detonated. Unfortunately, they were both seriously injured. Sgt. Daniels suffered a traumatic brain injury with bleeding and bruising on his brain, and the pet had a heart arrhythmia and a collapsed lung.
Both were rushed for treatment but they were separated. Aura went to a vet clinic and Sgt. Daniels was taken to a hospital.
“They told me [Aura] was very anxious and would not sleep,” Jesca, Daniel’s wife told Ledger-Enquirer. “They took her to the hospital to see Mark before he was flown back stateside. When she saw him, she climbed into bed with him and went to sleep for the first time since being treated. Mark was sent to Germany and then back to Camp Lejeune, N.C., but Aura had to stay in Afghanistan for treatment and then wait until someone could fly her back.”
While Sgt. Mark received treatment in the U.S. he never forgot his loyal, four-legged comrade. He wondered if the dog would forget him and used her as inspiration to get better. He wanted to interact with her once again when the military dog returned home.
Five months later the two veterans reunited at Camp Lejeune.
“At the homecoming [Mark] was nervous [Aura] wouldn’t remember him,” said Jesca.
The service man had always used a specific whistle sound to call the pet and he wondered if she would remember it and recognize it as his. Well, no matter how much time they spent apart, or how difficult it was for both of them to overcome their trauma, Aura remembered her handler and friend.
See the video below to see their reunion.
Sgt. Daniels is till recovering from his injuries and Aura is recovering from knee surgery at the Camp Lejeune kennels. There is a possibility the military dog will be retired due to her medical injuries, but if not, she will be reassigned to a new handler.
If the military dog is retired Sgt. Daniels hopes she can live the rest of her days with him.
“We’ve saved a warm spot on the sofa for her,” said Jesca.