Pawtastic reunion! Former military police officer and partner reunited after seven months

Julia LeDoux
May 15, 2019 - 12:35 pm



When former Marine Cpl. Aaron Stice left his job as a military police officer at Camp Pendleton to become a dog trainer with the Lackland Air Force Base Military Working Dog program, the hardest part was leaving behind his four-legged partner of three years, Kkeaton.

“I missed him for 7 months,” Stice said. “It was a very emotional time."

Tuesday the duo were reunited in San Antonio, Texas, reported KENS5.

Kkeaton, a 6-year-old Belgian Malinois, was named after Cpl. Keaton Coffey, who served with Stice in Afghanistan until he was killed in action in May of 2013, the same month Kkeaton was born. The first K in Kkeaton’s name indicates he was born at Lackland.

Kkeaton, Stice, pizza

"I couldn't be happier to have him back. Finall,y give him what he deserves. Sleep on the couch every day,” said Stice.

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Kkeaton trained to be an explosive detection dog. He was medically retired after injuring his neck during training.

“He had behavior issues,” Stice said. “He was a little aggressive. You can see now he’s not who he used to be. So, just a lot of love and training went into it to get him where he’s at.”

Kkeaton was brought from California to Texas by American Humane, an organization that reunites retired military working dogs with their former handlers.

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American Humane Veterinarian Lisa Staubus said Kkeaton lit up when he saw Stice.

“When he saw his best friend, he became unglued,” she said. “It was joyous to me. I've fallen for this dog in the days I’ve had him. But I can't tell you the joy I feel putting him in the hands of the person he really belongs to.”

Kkeaton will join Stice’s other two dogs – a Belgian Malinois and a red heeler -- for love and cuddles on the family couch.

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