Today marks the one-year anniversary of the Chinook crash in Afghanistan that claimed 30 American lives. One of the Navy SEALs killed was 35-year-old Jon Tumilson. A photo of Tumilson's dog Hawkeye lying by his master's coffin during his funeral became the iconic image of that horrible day.
The following is the original Home Post story, posted on August 23, 2011:
Navy SEAL Jon Tumilson had a very close friend in his life - his dog, Hawkeye. Tumilson, a former San Diego resident, was killed August 6 in the Chinook helicopter crash that also claimed the lives of 29 other American servicemembers.
Tumilson's funeral was on Friday in Rockford, Iowa at Rockford Senior High. Hawkeye was one of the 1,500 souls who attended. As you can see by the gut-wrenching photo above, Hawkeye refused to leave his master's side during the service.
The picture was taken by Lisa Pembleton, Tumilson's cousin. Pembleton contacted Home Post with this message:
Hawkeye is/was his loyal "son". To say that he was an amazing man doesn't do him justice. The loss of Jon to his family, military family and friends is immeasurable. I hadn't planned on taking any pictures other than with family. However, from my seat at the funeral, I felt compelled to take one photo to share with family members that couldn't make it or couldn't see what I could from
the aisle. This is that photo...
Pembleton also informed Home Post that a memorial fund has been set up in Tumilson's memory:
First Security Bank and Trust 201 West Main Ave. Rockford, IA 50468 Frogman 238 Memorial Fund