The Story of Cujo
Imagine if you will, a place so ravaged by centuries of war that few to none are affected by it anymore. Death and destruction have become so common place that it is barely noticed and its atrocities seldom recognized any longer. People have become almost comfortable with the idea that they may soon die by the hand of another, though they have done nothing to warrant it. My name is Charles and I don't have to imagine it because I work in that very place. A place where all progress has stopped because any progress at all is quickly destroyed by the angry hand of an evil oppressor.
This story actually begins with an unlikely hero to a number of our Army Soldiers. Cujo is a dog that was bred for fighting. Someone had prepped him as a puppy by cutting off his ears in order to keep his opponent from using them to get a better grip onto him. Two and a half years ago he managed to escape a short life in the local dog fighting circuit, into the arms of his rescuers, a Unit in the 82nd Airborne. The 82nd took very good care of him and in turn he protected them on patrol. This is not unlike how he protected the men from out of our Fort, when the 82nd allowed Cujo to adopt 1-22IN. He is very large with a huge head, and an even bigger heart.
His story with me begins when I, as a dismounted Infantry Squad Leader, started the process of taking over the duties of the Unit I was replacing in Afghanistan. More specifically it begins on one night mission about two days after arriving at my new post. It was a clear night with good lume as I headed outside the wire with the Squad leader that I was replacing. As I stepped out, I felt a heavy brush against my leg and something pressed up into my hand that felt like a dreadlock covered small horse. I quickly looked down to see what it was that I was about to run from and as it turned out it was a very large, very scraggly dog that looked as if he could EAT a small horse. My counterpart looked and laughed, he told me that, "And that, is Cujo." Almost as if on Cue, he nudged my hand again and ran to the front of the formation where he stayed the entirety of the patrol.
As we walked, there were a few times that I had lost view of the front man which is not uncommon around here. One of those times we were called to stop because of a "Hit" on our Vallen, which simply put is the audible signal our mine/IED detector makes when a possible IED is found. Most of the time it's trash. A second time we stopped because of a 'Hit" on Cujo. It was explained to me that Cujo is very focused and very protective of our squads. It was also explained that if Cujo stops, it not because he smells a cat, it's because he has seen, smelled, or heard something the he sees as a threat to us. It was also explained that we always pay attention to Cujo, because he has saved the bacon of the Units before mine, more than once.
Cujo has never left the lead of our patrols, doing his part to ensure the safety of our Soldiers outside the wire. In two months alone he has gone on over 90 missions and never asks for a day off. If you do the math, averaging three missions a day times two years plus our missions, he has gone on upwards of 2280 missions and upwards 5,500 miles. It is my full intention to bring this America Hero home to our Fort and to safety as soon as possible.
From SGT D:
Cujo has been just as valuable a soldier to us as any. His dedication to our safety while on dismounted foot patrols has been remarkable. He's always up front with the point man and he's always the first one to run into any house or high threat area. When we're not on patrols, he's lounging with us at our COP or playing with the squad. His company has helped to keep morale up and his bravery has shown others to dig deep in times of despair. We look at Cujo like another brother in arms, and with that means no man or battle buddy gets left behind. Which is why he needs to return to the states where he'll be loved, cared for, healthy, and happy.
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Donation Can Flyers
The Puppy Rescue Mission relies on your donations to help our military get their battle buddies home. TPRM is a USA non-profit 501(c)3 corporation and all donations are tax-deductible according to IRS codes.
If making your donation through PayPal, please retain your emailed receipt as proof of donation. Also, any checks sent directly to The Puppy Rescue Mission will receive a year-end statement for tax purposes. If you would like to request a year-end statement, or need assistance in any way, feel free to email us.
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In the face of the heart-rending loss of our beloved and beautiful Neda, Lee Deckelman, Neda Soltan Deckelman's dad, says:
"I would love for any one and everyone to donate any amount of money to The Puppy Rescue Mission in Neda's honor. It's now my mission to establish a fund for the overall transit shelter needs for PRM and increase their ability to manage sick animals. Just for starters...they could use some additional lab equipment for fecal samples...to ID infections. I want something positive to come from all of this. That's what Neda was all about!"
Neda's Fund is an ongoing, permanent gift option for The Puppy Rescue Mission. It will be used to ensure the most important mission of these brave battle buddies is one that is completed in health and safety. Won't you consider a gift in rememberance of Neda today?
Learn more about Neda's Fund and view her photo gallery!
Charity Gift Cards from CharityChoice
These gift cards allow you to give just like commercial gift cards. Turn your gift-giving into philanthropy. 100% tax-deductible - in both plastic and ecards. The Puppy Rescue Mission is one of their featured charities. CharityChoice Gift Cards
will benefit The Puppy Rescue Mission, Inc. (75% pre-designated) and the charities your gift-recipient designates (25% selected at redemption). Your gift-recipient is presented with a list of over 250 charities from which to choose including The Puppy Rescue Mission as a Featured Charity.
These are perfect for birthdays, business gifts, holidays, sympathy and wedding gifts. They are a unique gift idea that will show how much you care.
One of the difficult aspects of getting all the animals out of Afghanistan is the shipping of crates. We here in the USA are so fortunate to be able to go online or to the local store and buy what our furry friends need. Many other supplies are always needed, but crates always seem to be the most difficult to keep in inventory. We, at TPRM, appreciate all of our supporters more than you can know and once again we say Thank You to Petmate for their assistance in supplying crates so we can keep bringing puppies home to the land of the free because of the brave. Donate to the Crate Chip-in today!
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Visit the Puppy Rescue Mission store and buy products to show your support. All proceeds from the store benefit the mission and rescues of PRM.
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GoodSearch and GoodShop
The Puppy Rescue Mission is excited to be a part of GoodSearch
- easy and quick ways to help the mission earn money by simply using the Internet!
Every time you search the web with GoodSearch
, a penny will be donated to TPRM.
Shop online at GoodShop.com
and a percentage of each purchase will be donated to TPRM!