A Hero’s Sendoff

Photo: Joel Bissell/Muskegon Chronicle via AP

When Lance Cpl. Jeff DeYoung learned his black Lab, Cena, had terminal bone cancer, he knew he had to give the dog a sendoff fit for a hero. Cena was DeYoung’s service dog, but their relationship goes back much further than that.

When Cena served the first of this three tours with the Marine Corps in Afghanistan, he was partnered with DeYoung. Although he had other partners during his service, Cena went to live with DeYoung when he retired in 2014, changing careers from bomb sniffer to service support dog.

DeYoung figured Cena deserved one last ride in his Jeep with the top off. The dog was then honored and saluted by hundreds of people in Muskegon, Michigan, before being euthanized aboard a museum ship. His body was carried off the ship in a flag-draped coffin.

Rest easy, Marine. Others will stand the watch now.

Our deepest sympathies to Corporal DeYoung on the lost of his partner.

See all the pictures from Cena’s ceremony, courtesy of Joel Bissell and the Muskegon Chronicle via AP.

Until next time,
Good day, and good dog!

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