JENKS, Okla. (CBS/KOTV) -- We've told you countless stories about soldiers coming back to the home front. A story you might not have heard is the effort to bring stray dogs in Afghanistan back to the United States.
These aren't just any strays, though. They're dogs our servicemen and women have connected with in the war zone. A Jenks teacher and some of his students have raised thousands of dollars to get this mission accomplished.
Now you wouldn't know it from just looking but these are former stray dogs from Afghanistan. They are here temporarily, waiting to be re-united with a serviceman when he returns home. The project is called the Puppy Rescue Mission.
Jenks Freshman Academy teacher Derral McBride and his wife Yavonne fell in love with the idea, so they have fostered about a dozen of these dogs on their way to a happy reunion. He thought this might be a good project for some of his students. He says. "They just took hold of it, they ran with it and they did it, $6,300 to get as many dogs home as we could."
Mackenzie, Kylee, Torrey and Emily and some friends made posters and collected money from students and parents and in a month had more than $6,000 in exchange they get to occasionally play with the dogs. Quarantining, vaccinating, and shipping these dogs home is enormously expensive
Michelle Smith with The Puppy Rescue Mission says, "It costs between $3,000 and $5,000 depending."
Michelle Smith is the national treasurer for the project, she lives in Dallas and drove up to help with the story along with her loveable refugee Scout. The Puppy Rescue Mission has saved more than 300 dogs in the two years it has operated. Once a soldier asks for help getting "his" dog home it often takes months, money, and many diplomatic headaches to get it done. So why go to all that trouble?
Smith says, "Because these soldiers are so bonded with these animals it's the only good thing that is coming out of that country for them."
So, she says how could they say no?