Dozens of people gathered Saturday to help reunite soldiers with the four-legged friends they adopted while overseas in war-torn countries.
"Soldiers find companionship, hope and a sense of normalcy that is otherwise missing in their lives by partnering with the canine companions they meet while deployed in a war zone," said Trish Gohl, founder of the nonprofit No Dog Gets Left Behind. "In the soldier, the stray dog finds safety, comfort and an affection he's never known."
Many military personnel adopt stray animals while stationed at military bases overseas. But when their deployment ends, the soldiers return home without their new pets.
No Dog Gets Left Behind covers the approximately $4,500 it costs to ship the pets to the U.S., cover any necessary medical treatments and reunite the animals with the soldier who cared for them.
The organization hosted an event at the DoubleTree Downtown Philadelphia hotel Saturday night to raise money for its cause.