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KERNERSVILLE, N.C. (WGHP) — Kernersville Officer Sean Houle and his K-9 partner Jax will be retiring as the officer navigates life after the injuries he suffered in the line of duty nine months ago.

Houle was shot in the head, neck and hand while he tried to arrest an individual outside of an apartment complex.

Doctors said Houle had a “unicorn-style” injury, and that the projection of the bullet caused a rare style of injury.

They said he bled enough to die three different times.

On Thanksgiving, Nov. 25, Houle said this day is special to him. It’s a day he almost did not live to see.

“The fact that God has blessed me with the ability to be here with my family and friends and enjoy this Thanksgiving, and what it truly means — truly being thankful, not just the great food, not just the fun and the games but truly being thankful for each other. The fact that we have each other. That’s what it means, and it’s that much stronger to me this year.”

Houle told FOX8 that, based on doctor’s recommendations, he plans to medically retire from the force at the end of the year. He says with all the injuries he suffered it’s the best for him. His K-9 Jax will be retiring with him. 

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“The department has been incredible,” he said. “They’re going to retire my partner Jax with me, so I get to keep my buddy, my dog. That’s a big deal for me.

“God’s redirecting my life. I was on a certain path up until that night, and he’s taken what happened and he’s redirected my path a little bit and you know what that’s okay because. I’m still here, and I hope I can be an encouragement and a blessing to folks moving forward.”

You can read our full coverage of Sean’s inspiring recovery here.