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Heartbreaking: Loyal Dog Refuses To Leave The Side Of Fallen Navy SEAL During Memorial

Last week, we posted the wonderful video of a dog joyously welcoming home his owner, a soldier who had been away for nine months. Unfortunately, there’s a flip side to stories like that and today we got a heartbreaking reminder. A picture making the rounds online today shows the funeral of Petty Officer 1st Class Jon Tumilson, one of the 30 American special operation troops killed earlier this month when a helicopter was downed in Afghanistan. The picture shows Tumilson’s loyal dog Hawkeye lying by the soldier’s casket where he refused to leave. On top of the casket sat a framed photo of Tumilson, posing with Hawkeye during happier times.

The picture that’s been going around was taken by Tumilson’s cousin, Lisa Pembleton, who wrote that she “felt compelled to take one photo to share with family members that couldn’t make it or couldn’t see what I could from the aisle.”

It’s a sad reminder that, for every happy military reunion video we may see, there are still many, many brave American men and women who won’t be returning and the families, friends, and pets whose lives will be forever disrupted.

You can see Pembleton’s instantly-famous photo at her Twitter here. Below, watch a news report from Iowa’s KIMT which shows footage of Hawkeye as well as describing Tumilson’s life.

(h/t Animal Planet)

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