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IED survivor brings cheer to deployed service members

  • Published
  • By Chaplain (Capt.) Timothy Tangen
  • 455th Expeditionary Medical Group Chaplain

Chaplains with the 455th Air Expeditionary Wing have been making their unit visits accompanied by a furry friend.

A vehicle-borne IED survivor, rescue dog and health-assisted therapy dog named Jed recently arrived at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan, to be a stress relief to service members far from home.

“Whenever Jed comes for a visit he is always the best part of my day,” explained U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Travis Gervais, 822nd Military Police Detachment customs official.

 Jed was living with a contractor at the Northgate Hotel in Kabul when the hotel was attacked with a massive truck-laden suicide bomb Aug. 1, 2016. Following the bombing and a six hour firefight, Jed’s owner decided to leave Afghanistan and Jed behind. That’s when a therapy dog charity stepped in to adopt Jed and brought him to Bagram.

Everywhere Jed goes he gathers a crowd of people and makes them laugh. Jed’s favorite toy is a yellow tennis ball that he loves to retrieve over and over again, bringing endless entertainment when he runs, slides and snags the ball. 

“This feels so good, to see and feel his fury touch. It reminds me of my dog at home,” explained U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Taleesha Thomas, 455th Expeditionary Medical Group aeromedical technician.

Units can request a visit from Jed through the 455th Air Expeditionary Wing chapel staff by completing a request form at their sharepoint site: