Ex-Marine Megan Leavey Fights To Adopt German Shepherd She Served With In Iraq

VALLEY COTTAGE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A former Marine is hoping to be reunited with her partner so he could live out his final days in the comfort of her Valley Cottage home.

Since being discharged in December 2007, former Marine Cpl. Megan Leavey has been fighting to adopt Sgt. Rex, a 10-year-old German Shepherd.

“I’ve spent every waking moment with that dog,” she told CBS 2’s Emily Smith.

A traumatic brain injury knocked Leavey unconscious in Iraq in 2006. Insurgents watching from a rooftop  detonated an explosive, nearly killing her as well as injuring Rex’s shoulder. Together they made it out alive.

“I’ve taken care of him. He’s taken care of me. It’s just a bond you can’t break,” she said.
After the injury,  Rex went through rehabilitation with Leavey until her military commitment ended in 2008. At that point Leavey tried to adopt him, but the military still had need of his abilities.

megan and rex 2 Ex Marine Megan Leavey Fights To Adopt German Shepherd She Served With In Iraq

Megan Leavey and Rex (credit: Facebook)

“He’s actually the oldest dog working at Camp Pendleton in California,” Leavey said.

Recently, Rex developed facial palsy, preventing him from performing his tasks.

“He’s pretty much just sitting in a kennel not doing any good,” Leavey told 1010 WINS. “If he is not approved to be adopted he could be put to sleep that same day because they pretty much don’t need him anymore.”

“What would be the point of keeping a dog that is unable to work around in the kennels? My plan is to not let that happen,” she added.

Leavey and Rex spent two six-month tours together in Iraq, completing more than 100 missions.

Leavey said while in Iraq, they depended on each other.

“Rex slept next to me, I fed him, I walked him, I groomed him,” Leavey said. “He depended on me to take care of him completely and I did, as he took care of me.”

Sen. Charles Schumer has sent a letter in Leavey’s behalf to the man in charge of the military service dog program.

Now, all Leavey can do is wait.

Please leave a comment below…

Comments

One Comment

  1. Brigitte says:

    I think she should be allowed to take care of the dog and make his last days worth living.

  2. Luci Plant says:

    Contact Congressman Walter Jones of North Carolina. I don’t know if he is aware of this situation. He may help you. He has helped with other military dog situations.

    1. Gary Fluke says:

      All of us can help. Please send an email message to publicaf@lackland.af.mil. Tell them how you feel and help these two to whom we owe so much!

      1. Barack Obama says:

        I’d like to help. Its an election year and since I am a huge coward this would be very good press

    2. Sam Levine, Esq. says:

      Can anyone help me get in touch with Megan Leavey? I want to help her adopt the German Shepherd. I am an attorney in Atlanta & I can be reached @ (404) 303-8875. Thank you.

      1. caksamit says:

        TO THE ATTORNEY IN ATLANTA, GEORGIA WHO TO HELP MARINE CPL. MEGAN LEAVEY AND SGT. REX GERMAN SHEPHERD. I HAD SEEN THIS STORY ON FOX NEWS.COM I’M SURE SOMEONE COULD HELP CONTACT MEGAN LEAVEY. CAUSE REALLY NEEDS YOUR HELP BADLY.
        WE ALL NEED TO TELL EVERYONE YOU KNOW THIS STORY IN HOPES TO SAVE SPECIAL SOLDIER REX TO SAVE HIS LIFE.. PLEASE KEEP SPREADING THIS STORY TO EVERYONE AND ANYONE”LET HAVE GOOD THINGS HAPPEN HERE TO MEGAN & REX’ TO REUNITE THEM SHARE THEIR LOVE. I BELIEVE WE CAN DO IT IF WE TRY HARD ENOUGH. CAKSAMIT

        1. David Griswold says:

          Her FaceBook page is Megan J Leavey

          1. caksamit says:

            David Griswold,
            Thank you for helping locate Megan J. Leavey as I received an email with the information.
            You’re a great man and helper too ….
            Sincerely,
            caksamit

      2. caksamit says:

        THERE’S ATTORNEY IN ATLANTA, GEORGIA WHO WANTS TO CONTACT MEGAN LEAVEY. HER HOMETOWN IS VALLEY COTTAGE, NEW YORK.. THE ATTORNEY LEFT HIS/ OR HER PHONE # TO BE REACHED AT(404)303-8875.
        IF THERE’S ANYONE OUT THERE who know her CONTACT MEGAN LEAVEY WITH THIS ATTORNEY PLEASE HELP…….TIME IS AN ISSUE FOR REX…
        THANK YOU,
        caksamit

      3. caksamit says:

        Sam Levine, Esq.:
        I am the one who you contacted about Megan J. Leavey and I have some great news as I found her on Facebook. Through help of many people who wanted to see a happy ending with her and Rex. I have let her know that you’re trying to contact her to help in anyway. I, too would love to see this happen and I believe in my heart. “Good things happen to good people for reasons”…. I wish you well in contacting Megan and making a dream come true.
        Sincerely,
        caksamit

  3. dw says:

    Can’t we do just one act of decency in this war?

    1. THE REALITY TSAR says:

      Our soldiers and Marines have preformed heroically and have displayed incredible humanity and decency in their behavior.

      Certainly it would be nice if this Marine and Rex could be reunited, but don’t sell all of our other heros short.

  4. ddw says:

    Can’t we do just one act of decency in all this war chaos?

  5. Debbie says:

    We as Americans should stand up not only to protect our two legged servicemen but also our four legged . Let her have the dog NOW ,later we will find out how much the government spent on keeping the dog in a kennel when he had someone that loved him and wanted him.

    1. Jeff Benson says:

      This translates to me the Kennel Master & Vet are making fun of the law Rep. Stenny Hoyer passed, that allows for MWDs to honorably retire.

      Is Rex sick that they think they can afford his medical expenses?

      The Merck Veterinary Manual, I’m certain, is the medical manual they are following.

  6. Rod and Sue says:

    WHEN IN THE WORLD DID THE UNITED STATES AIR FORCE LOSE ALL
    OF ITS COMPASSION AND COMMON SENSE? SHAME, SHAME ON
    THOSE CONSIDERING ANYTHING OTHER THAN ALLOWING REX TO
    BE ADOPTED BY HIS BEST FRIEND. WE AND THOUSANDS ARE OPPOSING ANYTHING OTHER THAN ADOPTION – LISTEN TO US!

    1. JoAnna says:

      The Only Right Thing To Do Is To Let These Two Brave Soldiers Live The Rest Of They’re Lives Together Peacefully. It’t The Least We Can Do!

  7. Georgia Schilling says:

    This veteran should be allowed to adopt her beloved partner! What is the purpose of euthanizing him? Maybe the Humane Sociiety International can help. They unite veterans with their animal partners. These two served, and must be together….

  8. Mike Bolen says:

    It is the least we can do as a nation for all that serve.

  9. Kelly Dennis says:

    My apologies CBS New York. You did print my original comment. Thank you.

    1. Eric Kinback says:

      KUDO’s to you Kelly,,, not many today would apologize… But I praise your enthusiasm… I agree,,,, “Let The Boy Go Home”,,,,, and live out his life in “The Lap Of Luxury”……….. And Kudo’s to you too Megan,,,, you have a “Heart of Gold”,,, and thank you for your service… We are all safer because of you…. God Bless You….

  10. Kelly Dennis says:

    What’s the matter CBS New York? Was my language too strong for you. All I said was that if the man/person in charge of the service dog program didn’t let Megan have Rex, he should suffer the same fate that they intended for Rex. I left out the adjectives that kept you from printing my first comment. I hope that this tamed down version meets with your approval.

  11. Kelly Dennis says:

    If the man in charge of the service dog program doesn’t allow Megan to have Rex, they should put the son-of-a-bitch asshole down instead of the dog.

  12. Penny and Thierry says:

    all of this is silly of course we should respect our heroes and let meghan adopt this dog good luck and our thoughts are with you

  13. Gena says:

    I believe Megan and Rex should be together they have served there country.show us we can still believe in happy endings.Thank you!

  14. ..AUTUMN says:

    HOW CAN YOU DO THIS TO A HERO. SHAME ON YOU. PLEASE GIVE HIM THE RESPECT HE DESERVES, NOT TO MENTION THE LOVE.

  15. Dave says:

    I was in the Air Force and common sense and compassion are words that I would ever have applied to the way things were run in any of my places of duty. Everyone who has read this story knows what the right thing to do is without having to think about it. C’mon Marine Commander, think outside that tiny box and let Megan have her dog. It really is HER dog.

  16. Rene Lopez says:

    What is wrong with these people? Are we so stuck on bureaucratic bs that we forget practicality and common sense anymore? How about common decency? Or, if nothing else, save the government money. Let Megan take over the food bills, vet bills and caretaker pay.

  17. duncan tremblay says:

    Give Cpl Leavey the dog. It would be one less injustice in the military long list of their brand of justice. As a veteran I am familiar with their deception of truth

  18. Marcia Haines says:

    Don’t be so cruel, give her the dog.

    1. Helen Silvers says:

      I agree!

  19. R. Lennon says:

    What is there to be lost by allowing Megan to adopt Rex?

  20. Pam S. says:

    Let Cpl. Leavey and Rex be together!! It’s the only right thing to do!

    1. Linda R. says:

      I agree with Pam S. Give them both a break and allow them to live together forever!
      Linda R. in TX

  21. Wanda Otooole says:

    I am a vetern and often times the military makes mistakes. At one time there was a “buddy system” to enter with your relative or friend. So, even the US Goverment must know what it means to be “together”. Dogs have souls and this woman is willing to accept the responsibility from the Military. Leavey should contact her US Representative (who usually don’t have their kids serving in the military, so hopefully they can acknowledge her service and help). Contact the local Humane Society in New York as well. This is beyond ridiculous and just another example of how the military could give a rat’s ass for those who have served.

  22. Monique Gomez says:

    Please let Megan leavely keep her dog. This would be an injustice to let this dog die. Megan is a hero and deserves to have her dog by her side.

  23. Inge M. Prince says:

    Please let Megan adopt this heroic Dog> he deserves to be with her till death to them part.
    He protected her and she protected him. What is your problem? Its the only humane thing to do. Let them live happyli ever after. The Dog deserves to enjoy life after the sacrifices he made. He misses Megan. Have a heart.

  24. John Huppe says:

    To not reunite this soldier with her K9 would be cruel to soldier and K9. Common sense seems to be in short supply lately.

  25. Connie Vasquez says:

    It is utterly appalling that anyone would consider treating this four legged soldier with anything less than the dignity and the honor that he deserves. I have shared this story on Facebook and will write to each of the sources that you have all been kind enough to post. I pray these two will be reunited soon. Also, I was told one other source to contact would be: publicaf@lackland.af.mil

  26. Carol Bower says:

    This should not be. Megan should be able to adopt REx and give him a home. It is unconscionable that the Air force would rather put the dog to sleep than let Megan adopt him. This is crazy.

  27. Ralph & Jeannine Graden says:

    These 2 were inseperatable in war they should be together now! Can’t the Army allow this to happen.

  28. Cathy Harris says:

    Do the right thing, for goodness sakes! Allow Marine Cpl. Megan Leavey to adopt Rex. My husband is an Army veteran and our son is a Marine veteran. This is preposterous.

  29. Rosemary says:

    The military would rather put him to sleep than reunite him with Megan? Who is running this farce? Let Rex live out his days with someone who really loves this wonderful dog and not cooped up in a kennel…………………..

  30. George Bacon says:

    People, people – please!! Soldiers are Army (when spelled with a capital ‘S’). All branches of service can be ‘soldiers’ with a small ‘s’ in a generic sense for all fighting forces. BUT! Members of the United States Marine Corps are always spelled with a capital ‘M’ as Marines!! Thanks…

    1. Ellen S. says:

      share this with The Patrick Miracle on Facebook. you’ll get a lot of “likes”.

  31. susan says:

    This situation is a prime example that answers the question “gee, why does the military have so many suicides?” There is no recognition of soldiers and other living things as feeling, loving beings. There are just things to be used by the military and discarded. We can’t seem to get beyond that primitive, barbarian, emotionless state that soldiers have endured from their commanders since time immemorial. If they don’t give her the dog good luck recruiting people who care. Or maybe they don’t want those people.

  32. Judy says:

    He is her family, give him back to her.They have had their life on the line for us.It is truly a benefit that will not cost the govt.

  33. Julie says:

    What is the point of keeping them apart. Seriously??????

  34. Gina says:

    I cannot imagine the Army not allowing the dog to reunite with his partner. It’s inhuman and makes this country look really bad. They both served and were injured…there’s something really wrong with this entire picture…someone out there needs to do something and fast…too much time has passed as it is…what is the Army waiting for….what’s it gonna take??? Whatever needs to be done to make this happen….count me in…..

  35. Linda Lambert says:

    also Thelexusproject@optonline.com hope all these inks help we need to get a petition up too, the Lexus Project as an amazing Facebook page, they offered help!

    1. Ellen S. says:

      their correct email is: thelexusproject@optonline.net, not .com.

      I concur, Megan should contact them today.

  36. Sandra Kaeser says:

    The dog served his country, he deserves benefits also. Let him retire and live out his life with his fellow Marine. I have previously donated to an organization to help reunite a serviceman and dog. Try contacting http://www.supportour4leggedsoldiers.org. Our prayers to the both of you. May this be a happy ending.

    1. Lieut Dan's Aunt Karen says:

      thanks for your kindness sandra. i’ve forwarded the article to a niece in her 2nd year of veterinary school in minnesota, suggesting she & her classmates get involved with this kind of an outreach program.

  37. Jeff Benson says:

    The dog is unable to perform the job duties, according the the law he is adoptable.

    Call Rep. Steny Hoyer and have him put some political teeth into this subject, as he is the author of the bill that becam law providing for all MWDs to retire, and have him release the dog.

  38. Lieut Dan's Aunt Karen says:

    thank you & sgt rex for your service. hope the corps respects its motto of semper fi – ever/always faithful and reunites these 2 comrades in arms. they both helped each other in their recovery from a service connected injury. a nephew (army lieut, and ranger) served 2 iraq tours, earning a purple heart. c’mon corps, do the right thing and let rex retire in grace, and peace. rex has repaid the investment you made in him many times over. hope senator schumer can help reunite these 2 heroes. can we get a hoooooahh & a hooray, please

  39. Rosa says:

    To Marine Cpl Leavey-Good luck in bringing back your dog to United State.
    You have fought a war to protect our Freedom, so I just hope that they do the right thing and let him come back to you. Monroe NY 10950

  40. Rosa says:

    Marine Cpl Leavey fought a war to protect us; now we need to help her get her dog to U.S. I hope that this will happen because as a dog lover myself and with a German Shepard, they are very protected animals. I wish you alot of luck. Monroe, NY 10950

  41. mike says:

    Give her the dog, its the humane thing to do.

  42. lee says:

    The FBI and DEA fabricate evidence, steal from suspects and use murder to close bad cases.
    A corrupt DEA poisoned my dog to death because I called the San Francisco Attorney General’s office to complain that the FBI and DEA where fabricating evidence and stealing from me.
    Corrupt D.O.J. employees are also putting trace amounts, trying to stay under detectable amounts, of dangerous chemicals in their suspect’s food. The idea is to cause reduction in quality of life and eventual death.
    Also since that time, they have been using gang members to harass me and tampering with my car with they intention of causing an automobile crash.

  43. Linda Lambert says:

    Bring it to Facebook this needs to go viral!

  44. mary marcano says:

    they the (army) should let that dog go home with her, he did his part now let him live with her and be happy, are does the army not like to see anyone or thing happy you have know use for the dog give the dog a home not a grave..Please please.

  45. Barry Weiser says:

    As a Veteran myself I find it difficult to understand why these 2 Combat Veterans cannot be reunited. I was just on the phone with a representative of Guardians of Rescue,he returned a voice message I’d left about Cpr Leavy and Rex. He said he would look into the matter and get back to me.

    Thank you Arlene for the 1-888-287-3864 connection number. Laurie, the US Military is no pick-nick, a little slow on the pick up but 33 years after my discharge and injury they still are immensely helpful with my health care.

    When I am in the presence of other Vet’s at the VA I finally understand the “Band of Brothers and Sisters” Please don’t throw around “Screw” so quickly. I too am not in love with the organization but it’s members are another thing entirely,

    Please call 1-888-287-3864, make a donation if you can or just thank them for their efforts.

    Respectfully
    Barry Weiser
    NYC

  46. lindaqn says:

    This is so sad and unbelievable. Is there an online petition we can circulate??

  47. brooklyn4ever says:

    Really? Really???? Come on. There is an obvious bond between this soldier and her dog and no one would know that dog like she does. Please, let her adopt him and let her continue to take care of him. They both did their duty, now the Army needs to do theirs and do the right thing.

    1. Rev. Juel Luscomb says:

      This is the time to honor life and patriotism, as no other time in our history.
      We cannot exist without honor paid to any who fight in our place. We must stand up and defend their right to live and be human. Let us also act human.

    2. George Bacon says:

      soldier with a small ‘s’ is generic for all branches of service – but, please, when referring to a United States Marine, it is Marine with a capital ‘M’ – thanks…

    3. Jep Smith says:

      I agree with you. The Marine Corps should let her keep the dog. What is the link we need to help her?

    4. Brigitte says:

      I could not agree more.

  48. danny says:

    We need to respect ALL of our veterans. Let this soldier retire and let him live out his final days as a civilian with someone that loves him!

  49. Laurie says:

    Whats wrong with the ARMY? she fought the Dog helped Her- Hes 10-not many yrs left- u cant let her beloved dog spend last yrs comfortable with his PAL?? SCREW the ARMY- So cold and Cruel!

    1. howardfrombroward says:

      laurie, the article mentioned that cpl leavey and sgt rex are usmc, not army. back in the military draft days your status would have been 4-f.

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