For nearly a year, Marine Sgt. Ross Gundlach was separated from his war partner, Casey.
Casey is a Labrador retriever who formed an unbreakable bond with Gundlach. The pair served more than 150 missions together, sweeping the roads for bombs in Afghanistan.
“About midway through (the tour), I told her if we made it out alive I’d do whatever it took to find her,” said Gundlach, 25. The pair were separated after their tours ended.
But Gundlach did everything he could to make good on his promise. He began lobbying to adopt the dog. In 2013, he traveled to Iowa, prepared to plead his case before a government committee to get Casey back — but what happened next was a complete surprise. Instead, Gundlach and Casey were reunited in a ceremony made possible by the Iowa Elks Association, which donated $8,500 to replace Casey with another dog at the State Fire Marshal’s office.
To keep the plan a secret, Gundlach was told he would sit in on a military ceremony. Little did he know, Casey was waiting there to see him. The reunion between these two heroes is simply incredible. Gundlach wept, and Casey couldn’t have been more excited to see her partner again.