Army Spc. Justin Collins rescued a puppy in Iraq, just before he was killed in 2007. That puppy came home and was one of Justin's family's only comforts in their grieving. Justin's father Skip said, "She has been a major part of our healing process, bringing us to the point we are at now, after losing our son."
The dog, named "Hero" almost lost her life on Tuesday, when the family's New Hampshire home caught fire, according to Yahoo. Hero was not breathing when she was finally found.
Newport, N.H. Fire Chief Wayne Conroy said, "When I saw the condition she was in, my heart just sank…. I just thought, 'Oh my God, the dog's not going to live.'" But, Hero was determined not to give up so quickly. She came to thanks to the oxygen mask and treatments used in a frantic, harrowing ambulance ride to the hospital.
Skip owes a debt of gratitude to first responders. In a moment caught on tape, he says to Chief Conroy,"These guys revived my dog. It don't get no better than that. Thank you." The responders also saved Justin's medals and the flag that was draped over his casket, which are irreplaceable treasures to his family.
The family also can't help but believe that it was Justin, who was only 20 when he died, who helped "Hero" survive. "There are just too many signs... to not know that he's there, and he's looking out for us," says Skip. "And looking out for his dog."
Just a day later, "Hero" is back to her old self and will continue to be an indispensable comfort to the family members that will forever miss their son, Justin.
Image via Yahoo