Veteran saves American Bald Eagle he calls ‘Freedom’

RUSH CITY, Minn. (KARE) – An Army veteran from Minnesota who fought for his country’s freedom this week saved “Freedom.” But Freedom is not a concept. It’s a bird.

On Rush Lake, just east of Rush City, is a dock owned by Jason Galvin. Flying over the dock is the American flag. Galvin, an Army veteran, fought for his country in Afghanistan. So, to call Jason a patriot is a pretty accurate description.

This past week, though,he took his patriotism to a new height when he saved an American Bald Eagle that was hanging from a rope high up in a tree, upside down.

“Right then I thought, man, that just doesn’t look good,” said Galvin.

It turned out others had been watching the bird, too.

“That’s when we decided we really need to make some calls,” Galvin said.

His wife called everyone she could think of from the fire department to wildlife officials. But, the eagle was too high up in the tree to be rescued.

“He had jokingly said, we could try to shoot it down,” said Jason’s wife, Jackie Galvin. “I said, “Yup, that’s what you’re going to do,’ ”

Jason said he wouldn’t shoot the limb to help bring the eagle down if he couldn’t do it safely. That’s when a conservation officer gave him the green light.

It took Jason 150 shots to chip away at the limb with slow, precise shots. But, eventually his bullets brought down the limb and the eagle into some soft underbrush beneath the tree.

After the bird was caged, the conservation officer took it in the front seat of his truck to a raptor center for treatment.

“Fourth of July, you know, that’s our bird, I can’t let it sit there,” said Jason.

“He fought for our freedom again yesterday,” said Jackie Galvin.

Veterinarians who are assessing the bird and its prognosis say the eagle is eating and drinking.

Mission accomplished.

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