United States Navy SEALs are notorious for their quick, tactical interventions, and are bound by a code of honor that embraces the practice of never leaving a man behind. These guiding principles hold particularly true for former special operations legend and real-life “Lone Survivor,” Marcus Luttrell, who recently rescued an injured pup (Roy) from a roadside ditch in Texas.
One Lucky Dog
One morning while driving, Luttrell noticed two distraught women standing on the side of the road. Concerned, Luttrell pulled over and saw whom he assumed to be their dog, injured and covered in blood, apparently a victim of vehicular trauma. As a recipient of both the Navy Cross (an award for valor in combat) and Purple Heart (awarded to those wounded or killed while serving), Luttrell knew Roy’s condition was urgent, and rushed him to the ER.
Roy underwent several days in critical care and required extensive pain management and wound care, and orthopedic surgery on his left knee. Mr. Luttrell remarkably found and committed to this dog without a prior relationship with him. The parallel between Roy’s plight and the well-publicized ordeal that Mr. Luttrell survived while serving and protecting our country makes Roy’s recovery even more meaningful.
Parallel Stories of Survival
In late June 2005, Luttrell and a team of elite SEALs landed in Afghanistan to capture or kill a Taliban militia leader. Luttrell and his team were met with gunfire, grenades, and mortars. Nineteen Americans died that day, however, Luttrell miraculously survived. Despite bullet wounds, a broken back, and rocks and shrapnel lodged in his legs, Luttrell crawled seven miles through the mountains and found refuge with a band of village men, one notably being Muhammed Gulab.
For several days, Gulab and other villagers protected Luttrell from the Taliban militia—even when faced with death threats. While guarding Luttrell, Gulab sent an emissary to the nearest U.S. base to ensure Luttrell’s rescue. Soon after, the U.S. military ordered a large search-and-rescue operation with warplanes and ground forces that fought the Taliban combatants and brought Luttrell home.
Like Roy’s story, Luttrell’s past tells a tale of survival and gratitude for the help he received during wartime.
“Roy appeared to be near death when we found him in that roadside ditch. I, myself, almost died in a ditch, so felt a special responsibility to take care of him,” remarked Luttrell, who was portrayed by Mark Wahlberg in the 2013 American biographical military action film “Lone Survivor.” “I survived solely because of the help others gave me, and now Roy has survived because of the help others have given him.”
Beginning a New Life
Despite Roy’s injuries and plight, he loves human interaction and has a tail wag for everyone he meets. REDCOLLAR RESCUE was contacted by Roy’s awesome veterinary team to ask us for help in finding him a perfect forever home. Roy spent time in a wonderful RCR foster home, while he continued to go through rehabilitation. We are so happy to report that Roy found his forever home and family in Montana, and his new mom and dad are the parents of his Houston foster mom!