U.S. Sailor reunited with his combat K9 in Magnolia

MAGNOLIA, Texas (KTRK) -- A U.S. Sailor has adopted the K9 he served with for years in Afghanistan. ABC13 was there for the emotional reunion after 3 years apart.

"I am so excited and thankful to be reconnected with Max," said Master-At-Arms Chief Petty Officer Fabian Salazar.

Military working dog Max is a 9-year-old Belgian Malinois.

Salazar and Max were an explosive detection team that were paired up in 2011, and trained for six months before deploying to Afghanistan from March of 2012 to January 2013. The pair conducted dismounted patrols and counter implemented explosive device support down range.

Salazar received several combat awards, and he credits them all to Max. Salazar says that they both received The Combat Action Badge through the Army, The Combat Action Ribbon through the Navy, an Army Commendation for their tour, and an Army Commendation with Valor for an unmentioned specific event.

In 2012, they both received The Combat Meritorious Advancement. Salazar was named to Petty Officer 1st Class and Max to Chief Petty Officer.

Once they returned stateside, they were stationed in Everett Washington. The two were separated in October of 2014 when Salazar was reassigned.

The Veteran K9 Rescue Ranch reunited the pair in Magnolia.

"With the help of his other handlers, who kept in contact with me after we parted ways, I was able to adopt him, and with the help of Mission K9 Rescue, I was able to be reunited with him," said Salazar.

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