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Jenna and her daughters reunite with Sully the service dog: 'I want to hug you'

The dog that served President George H.W. Bush reunited with two of his biggest fans, Jenna Bush Hager's daughters Mila and Poppy, on Veteran's Day.
/ Source: TODAY

A special service dog has been honored on Veteran's Day with a statue and a sweet reunion with two of his biggest fans.

Jenna Bush Hager's two daughters were able to say hello on Zoom to their old buddy Sully, the lovable Labrador retriever that assisted late President George H.W. Bush in his final months before his death in 2018 and now serves veterans at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.

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Mila, 7, and Poppy, 5, were all smiles as they reconnected with an old friend.

"Hello little doggy, I want to hug you," Poppy said.

"Do you remember Great Gampy?" Mila said, using their affectionate nickname for George H.W. Bush.

The girls even made sure to get their 1-year-old brother, Hal, so he could virtually meet Sully for the first time.

The heartwarming reunion was part of a memorable day for Sully, as the 4-year-old Labrador was honored with a life-size statue in Smithtown, New York, on the campus of America's VetDogs. Sully is a graduate of the the organization, which trains dogs to help military veterans and first responders with disabilities.

"It's wonderful, the credit to all service dogs," Sully's trainer, Valerie Cramer, said on TODAY Wednesday about the statue.

"Even though Sully is a celebrity service dog, I think so many of our clients see a little bit of their dog every time they see Sully."

This is actually the second bronze statue of Sully, as another one was unveiled last year at the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library in College Station, Texas.

Sully could often be found right by Bush's side providing comfort, particularly following the death of his wife of 73 years, former first lady Barbara Bush.

The dog faithfully served the former president to the end, which was captured in a touching photo of Sully in front of Bush's casket.

Bush also served the country himself as a pilot in the Navy during World War II, which Sully honored on Memorial Day last year with a moving picture in front of a stone at the National World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., honoring the former president.

Cramer shared that when Bush first received Sully as his service dog, one of his main concerns was potentially taking away a dog from another veteran in need.

"The thing that we had all arranged prior to Sully even going to your grandfather was that Sully would continue to work with veterans forever and that he would share the experience and the joy that Sully and a service dog can give to a veteran," Cramer told Jenna. "And that's really a gift that your grandfather gave to everyone."

Sully also had a special moment last year when he met his namesake, hero pilot Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger, live on TODAY. Sullenberger, 69, is a retired airline captain who saved 150 passengers aboard US Airways Flight 1549 in 2009 when he safely landed the crippled plane in New York City's Hudson River.

Jenna shared that Sully has been doing great in his new job at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center and was just promoted to a higher rank. However, he can't freely roam the halls right now due to the coronavirus pandemic, but he still FaceTimes with some patients.

Such a good boy!