In Greencastle, you might find Alex Reed with his dog, Turk. Reed received Turk two-and-a-half-years-ago through the program Operation Save-A-Vet, Save-A-Pet. The program helps veterans with service-connected disabilities.
“And as I was meeting all the dogs, I had the opportunity to meet Turk and he and I sort of hit it off right away,” said Reed.
Reed served in the military from 1998 to 2003. In 2003, he was a part of the invasion of Iraq. As a result, Reed ended up being diagnosed with PTSD. Reed says Turk can sense when he is upset and helps calm him down.
“Having Turk in my life has helped me maintain a quality of life, that it takes out all the lows,” said Reed.
Reed works as a watershed specialist for Washington County’s Division of Environmental Management.
Back in 2017, he claimed a former environmental director mistreated him and told others he was a danger to people. The director has since been fired and a federal commission ruled in Reed’s favor. Reed says Turk helped him get through that tough time.
“For sure, that was a dark time, and for sure that was a lot of help. There’s no other way to put it,” said Reed.
Reed says Turk is more than just an ordinary pet.
“You spend so much time with each other. We work with each other for seven months doing training three nights a week, for sure, and you build a relationship in so your responsible for each other. He’s responsible for me, I’m responsible for him,” said Reed.