Friday, July 28, 2017

Dog Gets Beautiful Sendoff, Military Honors For Service To U.S.

Cena and Lance Cpl. Jeffrey DeYoung. Cena, a brave military
bomb sniffing dog, died this week and was given complete
military honors.
I'll start right off that this post has a high Kleenex alert, so get your tissue ready for this one.

We all know that us Americans must really take care to honor our military veterans. It's a cliche, I know,  but an important one. 

This week, proper honors went to a veteran named Cena.

Cena was a bomb-sniffing dog during combat in Iraq, serving honorably and bravely with Lance Cpl Jeffrey DeYoung of Muskegon, Michigan.

According to MLive:

"During that time, DeYoung carried Cena across rivers. Cena kept DeYoung warm during cold desert nights. DeYoung threw his body over Cena's while under heavy fire from the Taliban. And when DeYoung lost seven friends during the course of three weeks, Cena was there to comfort him."

Except for a four year separation, when DeYoung was redeployed separately from Cena, they've pretty much always been together. DeYoung says the companionship has lasted all of his adult life.

For the past three years, Cena and DeYoung were back home in Michigan, still the tightest of military buddies. True brothers in arms.

Recently, Cena, age 10, was diagnosed with terminal bone cancer. This tight bond between Cena and DeYoung would have to end, at least in this physical world. Cena had to be euthanized.

Here's what DeYoung wrote on Facebook the day before Cena passed.

"Words cannot convey what I'm feeling and thinking. I want to run away and not face what I must do. But he needs me to be strong and set him free. He has blessed my life with love and admiring.

Because of him, I got to have a family. Because of him, I was able to live. May God forgive me for what I do tomorrow. And may the Lord greet you with open arms and a nice ear scratch.

Goodnight my friend, goodnight my brother. May you rest your head tonight knowing how loved you are and how dearly you will be missed."

In the last of countless acts of kindness DeYoung showed toward Cena, he made sure the dog was given full military honors at a ceremony in Michigan this week.

Cena went for a last ride in an open Jeep so he could feel the wind on his face one last time. Then, Cena and DeYoung boarded the USS LST 393. Cena was euthanized and Taps was played.

Hundreds of mourners turned out to the ceremony.

I think I speak for millions to thank Cena and DeYoung for their service. 

Here's the video:

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