"My partner is lying next to me severely wounded and bleeding. I move to him and touch him but he's not responding. I feel sharp pains in my side and back. I'm bleeding but deal with it and concentrate on comforting my partner and protecting him from further harm."
This paragraph comes from a letter written on behalf of Lex, a seven-year-old German Shepherd. His partner was Marine Corporal Dustin Lee, who was killed in Iraq. The letter was written as part of a petition to allow Lee's family to adopt Lex.
"We were told at the funeral that Lex would be retired soon and we would have first shot at getting the dog and it was 99% sure that we would be getting him soon," said Jerome Lee, Dustin's father.
Eight months after the funeral, Lex is still on duty serving only in a training role now as he was also wounded in the attack that killed his partner.
"We want the dog to be with us because that was the last thing that Dusty saw," Lee said. "That was his companion, his friend, his protector."
The Lee family has been doing everything they can for the last few months to try to get through the red tape that has prevented the adoption of Lex. In addition to the petition, the family has talked with members of their congressional delegation, state governors - both past and present, and military contacts.
"The military has been slow to react to requests and we are wanting to give the dog a good home, we're trying to get him back because we know that's what Dusty would want," Lee said.
The Lee family has been told that between now and Thanksgiving they will finally receive word on whether or not the adoption will take place.
Click here to view the petition.