Speed Reads

happy endings

Veteran finds dog years after she was given away during deployment

Four years after his dog was surrendered to an animal rescue while he was deployed to Afghanistan, John Russo was reunited with his beloved American bulldog, Bones.

Bones was a gift from his mother in 2008, and although he broke up with his girlfriend before going overseas, he thought she would continue to take care of the dog. When he returned, he found out she had instead given him up for adoption, and also changed her number and moved away, leaving Russo no way of finding her.

It took years, but he finally stumbled across Bones while looking at a website showcasing adoptable animals. "I had a feeling that day and I went on the website and there she was," he told ABC News. Russo quickly contacted the Flagler Humane Society in Palm Coast, Florida, and was told that his ex had tried to have the dog put down at a vet, but the doctor refused and made her surrender Bones instead.

When Russo walked through the door of the shelter, Bones "ran and gave him a huge bear hug and was whining and jumping all around," employee Katrina Geigley said. "If my job has ever been worth it, it was in that moment." Russo is now training to become a firefighter, and said he loves coming home from a long day to see Bones waiting for him.