Trust in me my friend, for I am your comrade.
I will protect you with my last breath.
When all others have left you and the loneliness of night closes in,
I will be at your side.
Together we will conquer all obstacles,
and search out those who wish to do harm to others.
All I ask of you is compassion,
and the caring touch of your hands.
It is for you that I will unselfishly give my life
and spend my nights unrested.
Although our days together may be marked by the passing of the seasons
Know that each day by your side is my reward.
My days are measured by the coming and going of your footsteps.
I anticipate them at every opening of the door.
You are the voice of caring when I am ill,
The voice of authority when I have done wrong.
Do not chastise me unduly,
for I am your right arm,
the sword at your side.
I attempt to do only what you bid of me.
I seek only to please you and remain in your favor.
Together you and I shall experience
a bond only others like us will understand.
When outsiders see us together,
their envy will be measured by their disdain.
I will quietly listen to you and pass no judgment,
nor will your spoken words be repeated.
I will remain ever silent, ever vigilant, ever loyal.
And when our time together is done
and you move on in the world,
Remember me with kind thoughts and tales.
For a time we were unbeatable,
Nothing passed among us undetected.
If we should meet again on another street
I will gladly take up your fight,
I am a Military Working Dog.
We are the guardians of the night.
— Author Unknown
U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Anthony Heck, a native of Wasilla, Alaska, and dog handler attached to Chosen Company, and Nina 3, a military working dog, patrol in the Jani Khel district April 11 during Operation Marble Lion. Chosen Company is part of the 3rd Battalion Airborne, 509th Infantry Regiment, Task Force Gold Geronimo. Army Staff Sgt. Jason Epperson