LIFE

Injured Army Sgt. Dies Before Receiving Service Dog, So Soldier He Saved Takes Him In Instead

by Nicole Cannizzaro
Nicole is a writer who studied journalism. She loves music and spending time with her family.

Jake Murphy stepped on an IED while serving his country, and U.S. Army Sgt. Derek McConnell helped him safely get off the ground.

But as soon as Jake was airlifted, Derek found himself in the same tragic situation: He too stepped on an IED. Both men lost their legs.

When they came home, each tried to get a service dog to help them during their day-to-day lives and struggles. Derek was to receive a beautiful German shepherd, Gabriel. But unfortunately, he did not make it to the day they were to meet.

Derek passed away, and although the heartbreak may still have been there, Jake was blessed with a surprise after struggling to find his own service dog.

Jake ended up meeting Gabriel. They hit it off, and now Gabriel is a sweet reminder of Jake’s fallen friend and a great help in his everyday life.

4 Paws for Ability, a great organization that pairs service dogs with children and veterans, brought Jake and Gabriel together. As the group knows, sometimes the companion you need the most happens to have four legs and a furry tail.

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