As an Army National Guard medevac pilot, Nick Pierzchalski is no stranger to the harrowing nature of war.
Nick flew Blackhawk helicopters. As a medevac pilot, his primary duty was to fly wounded soldiers to safety.
Nick saved a lot of lives, no doubt, but the nature of his job left morale pretty low.
That is until Airys came along.
“This dog ran up to me, ran up to our group, and befriended us immediately,” Nick said, recalling the first time he met Airys the dog.
The 1-year-old shepherd-mix was a stray in a war zone in Iraq — the same zone in which Nick was stationed.
When Nick and the rest of his crew met Airys, she instantly became a light in the darkness.
Nick built her a kennel in their hangar, and from then on they were inseparable.
“It brought great morale to me and the whole group — felt like a piece of home,” he said. “She’d hang out with us. She was constantly with us.”
But when the time to come back home to Florida finally arrived, Nick had to leave Airys. But the medevac knew he had to bring her home with him.
With the help of the SPCA International, they finally made it happen.
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