Nick Montez is a former Marine deployed in Afghanistan in 2011. He served in the bomb detection squad working with bomb-sniffing dogs. The squad has the heavy burden of ensuring the safety of their fellow soldiers and the locals.

Before he got stationed in the Middle East, Nick never owned a dog before. He never really saw them as pets and didn’t have the desire to have one. But when he met his K9 partner, Mally, his views of canines changed.

The two worked side-by-side every day and relied on each other to get the job done right. Any mistake could result in injuries, or worse, the loss of lives. This made their bond grow stronger.

Always on the mind

After their tour was done, both Nick and Mally were sent back to the U.S. Sadly, as their deployment was done, their partnership was over. Nick was honorably discharged soon after, and Mally was stationed at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio.

The former Marine couldn’t get his partner out of his mind. He kept tabs on the dog and even got a tattoo of the dog’s name and her military identification number on his leg. He frequently wrote letters and tried to talk with military officials, signifying his intent to adopt Mally. But she was still on active duty and serving her country.

It seemed that his dream of giving Mally a forever home would not happen.

A dream come true

Seven years after the two last saw each other, Nick received a letter that said Mally was about to retire. And the best part of the letter is when it said that he could adopt her. The excited veteran flew from Spokane, Washington, to pick up his best friend in Texas when the dog was finally cleared. The dog didn’t recognize him at first, but she started wagging her tail and licking his face when he got closer.

When the two finally got to Spokane, the local residents already knew their story, and the local authorities lined up to welcome them back. It was a good indication of the great life that the nine-year-old dog will have.


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Chloe Roper
As a little girl living in the country side without many neighbors, my dog Sostee became my best friend. We shared an immense bond and I fell in love with these loving, beautiful and wonderful creatures. I knew from a tender age that I wanted to work with animals. I worked at the Humane Society of Northwest Indiana for a few years, and have experience with a variety of dogs and cats. When I’m not working as semi-retired Assistant Administrator in a Home Health Care Agency in Merrillville Indiana, I am a grandma frolicking with my active grandchildren and my sweet dog, Kresi.


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