Devil Dog And War Dog Forge Lasting Bond, Overcome Hardship Together

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Cpl. Sean Grady, a dog handler and pointman with Echo Company, 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, and Ace, an improvised explosive device detection dog, pause for a break while sweeping a chokepoint during a patrol here, April 27, 2012.
(U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Alfred V. Lopez)

Heroes come in all forms, shapes, and sizes. Some walk upright on two legs, and others rove on four, with wagging tails and shaggy fur. Marine Cpl. Jeff DeYoung and his military working dog, Cena, supported combat operations in Helmand province, and were wounded in the line of duty —- DeYoung used his body to shield Cena from incoming machine gun fire — but continued their mission, even participating in Operation Moshtarak, the largest operation in Afghanistan at the time.


DeYoung and Cena were separated on April 25, 2010, after the Marine’s deployment ended.  After his separation, DeYoung began to struggle with post traumatic stress. But, on June 5, 2014, Cena was retired from military service and adopted by her former partner, DeYoung.

Fox News reports that though DeYoung still has the occasional nightmare — so does Cena — both are doing better, and they seem to have found solace and comfort in their reunion.

Conflict photographer Lynsey Addario's seen a hell of a lot of combat over the past twenty years. She patrolled Afghanistan's Helmand Province with the Marines, accompanied the Army on night raids in Baghdad, took artillery fire with rebel fighters in Libya and has taken photos in countless other wars and humanitarian disasters around the world.

Along the way, Addario captured images of plenty of women serving with pride in uniform, not only in the U.S. armed forces, but also on the battlefields of Syria, Colombia, South Sudan and Israel. Her photographs are the subject of a new article in the November 2019 special issue of National Geographic, "Women: A Century of Change," the magazine's first-ever edition written and photographed exclusively by women.

The photos showcase the wide range of goals and ideals for which these women took up arms. Addario's work includes captivating vignettes of a seasoned guerrilla fighter in the jungles of Colombia; a team of Israeli military police patrolling the streets of Jerusalem; and a unit of Kurdish women guarding ISIS refugees in Syria. Some fight to prove themselves, others seek to ignite social change in their home country, and others do it to liberate other women from the grip of ISIS.

Addario visited several active war zones for the piece, but she found herself shaken by something much closer to home: the Marine Corps Recruit Depot at Parris Island, South Carolina.

Addario discussed her visit to boot camp and her other travels in an interview with Task & Purpose, which has been lightly edited for length and clarity.

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An Army staff sergeant who "represents the very best of the 101st Airborne Division" has finally received a Silver Star for his heroic actions during the Battle of the Bulge after a 75-year delay.

On Sunday, Staff Sgt. Edmund "Eddie" Sternot was posthumously awarded with a Silver Star for his heroics while leading a machine gun team in the Ardennes Forest. The award, along with Sternot's Bronze Star and Purple Heart, was presented to his only living relative, Sternot's first cousin, 80-year-old Delores Sternot.

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U.S. special operations forces are currently field testing a lightweight combat armor designed to cover more of an operator's body than previous protective gear, an official told Task & Purpose.

The armor, called the Lightweight Polyethylene (PE) Armor for Extremity Protection, is one of a handful of subsystems to come out of U.S. Special Operations Command's Tactical Assault Light Operator Suit (TALOS) effort that media outlets dubbed the "Iron Man suit," Navy Lieutenant Cmdr. Tim Hawkins, a SOCOM spokesman, told Task & Purpose on Wednesday.

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Army officers who are on the short list to become a battalion commander will now undergo a psychological exam.

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