Military veterans get free portraits with their pets

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DENVER -- The bond between war veterans and their dogs is that they’re family, according to Marla Keown. So, it’s only natural that a veteran would want a professionally taken portrait of him with his best friend.

Keown, who is a professional still photographer, knows this, being a dog person herself. She is offering a professionally photographed portrait of the veteran and his dog, free of charge.

Being an Iraqi war veteran, she knows what life, post battlefield, is like.

“When I started going through my own troubles, I realized that I wasn’t alone, that there is lots of veterans out there that would like to have a nice portrait of themselves with their pet, and they don’t," she said.

Until now.

Vietnam veteran Billy Duren is looking forward to his picture with his husky mix Truman.

“I don’t know how much longer he’s going to be with us, with me.  So I want something to remember him by," he said.

U.S. Marine Corps veteran Vanessa Mahoney agrees.

“It’s a gift that allows us to be able to remember this best friend that we’ve had that has significantly impacted our lives," she said.

Keown said dogs are great therapy for veterans.  And taking their pictures together is great therapy for her.