ALBANY, NY – Senator David Carlucci (D-Rockland/Westchester) will induct Marine Cpl. and Purple Heart recipient, Megan Leavey and military working dog, Rex into the New York State Senate Veterans’ Hall of Fame on Tuesday, May 15th.
The Hall of Fame Honoree Celebration is a time to honor outstanding veterans across the state and will be held in Albany at the Legislative Office Building at 11:00 a.m.
“It’s my sincere honor to recognize Marine Cpl. Megan Leavey tomorrow and induct her into the New York State Veterans' Hall of Fame. Cpl. Leavey and her dog Rex are American heroes who shared a remarkable bond. Cpl. Leavey is from Rockland County and made everyone here and across the world proud. She is a role model to young women and her love of country was shown through her service and desire to serve following the tragic events of 9/11,” said Sen. Carlucci.
Cpl. Leavey is well known for her fight to keep Rex following her service in Iraq, which was portrayed in the 2017 Hollywood film “Megan Leavey.”The film starring, Kate Mara as Leavey told her inspiring story and shared with the world Cpl. Leavey’s bond with Rex as they saved countless lives in Iraq.
The pair completed two six-month tours in Iraq and more than 100 missions together.
Towards the end of their second tour in 2006, the duo was wounded in the line of duty.
Insurgents watching from a rooftop detonated an IED (Improvised Explosive Device) as they watched Cpl. Leavey and Rex in front of a patrol sweeping the area.
With a full year left to her enlistment in the Marine Corps, Cpl. Leavey completed physical therapy along with Rex, and helped train fellow dog handlers preparing for their future deployments.
Cpl. Leavey was then discharged in December 2007 from the Marine Corps. Unfortunately, she could not take Rex back home with her.
Rex was unable to deploy anymore, but was still able to work stateside at Camp Pendleton. Rex was deemed "not adoptable" in his medical records, so toward the end of Rex’s service, it was unclear what his future would be.
After involvement from local veteran officials and U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer, Rex was granted retirement and entrusted to Cpl. Leavey.
Cpl. Leavey and Rex were able to spend the last eight months of his life together at her home in New York.