We’ve all heard stories about pets being rescued by humans. But have you ever heard of humans being saved by pets?
Army Sergeant Josh Marino is a war veteran and unfortunately, like many in the armed forces, he was permanently scarred from his service in the military. He suffered a brain injury in Iraq and had severe PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder).
Marino came to a decision to stop the pain and end his own life.
“I did not want to deal with it anymore,” Marino said. “I took out one of my knives and wrote a letter on my computer and went outside to smoke one last cigarette.”
He went outside the barracks at Fort Riley in Kansas to take his last drag and heard a sound. He went on to investigate.
It was a soft “meow” by a small black and white kitten who emerged from the bushes. This kitten would not only change the life of Marino but the lives of many other veterans suffering the same fate.
“He just walked up and started rubbing up against my leg and let me pet him, I broke down crying, burst into tears,” he said, in his short film Josh & Scout, a Mutual Rescue. “Maybe he knew there was something I couldn’t quite handle.”
Marino named the kitten “Scout” and started to feed him every day.
“I stopped thinking about all my problems and started thinking about his problems and what I could do to help him,” Marino said.
But one day Scout didn’t show and Marino was heartbroken. He eventually moved on and started dating a girl. They decided to visit an adoption event because Scout’s presence had such a positive impact on Marino’s well-being.
“All of a sudden, little black and white paw shot out from a crate and started smacking me in my left arm,” he said, referring to Scout at the shelter. “I opened up that cage, I pulled him out, and held him tight.”
He signed the adoption papers right there.
Watch the video of Josh & Scout:
Marino eventually turned his life around and was medically discharged from the army. He went on to marry his girlfriend, Becky and earned a master’s degree in Clinical Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling. He now works at the Department of Veteran Affairs counseling disabled vets and shares the story of Scout to others as an inspiration.
“In my opinion, real men like cats,” he said.
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