Veteran Saves a Bald Eagle Officials Left for Dead
'Fourth of July, you know, that's our bird'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 5, 2016 12:28 AM CDT
The trapped eagle.   (Facebook)
camera-icon View 1 more image

(Newser) – In one of the most American stories to surface on Fourth of July weekend or any other weekend, a military vet in Minnesota used his sharpshooting skills to free a bald eagle named Freedom. The bird had been entangled in rope in a tree for more than two days when Afghanistan veteran Jason Galvin decided to shoot it free, his wife, Jackie Gervais Galvin, says in a Facebook post, per the Guardian. Galvin—who cleared the plan with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources after the police and fire departments told him there was nothing to do but leave the bird to die—severed the rope 75 feet above the ground after firing around 150 shots from a .22-caliber rifle.

Galvin tells KARE 11 that it took around 90 minutes to free the eagle from the tree near their cabin in Rush City. "It was very windy and I was just waiting for the right shot," he says, adding, "It was a good weekend for it to happen. Fourth of July, you know, that's our bird. I can't let it sit there." Branches broke the eagle's fall on the way down, and the Galvins wrapped it in a blanket before taking it to the University of Minnesota's Raptor Center, where it's expected to make a full recovery. "We named the eagle Freedom and hope to be able to release him near his home once he is back to health," Jackie Galvin says. (Bald eagles have been making a big comeback in Boston.)