Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Dogs and Bravery

Great photo of a dog training beside the U.S. Army's finest. Dog's were used in fighting since ancient times and they continue to serve by the sides of brave soldiers today in the fight against terrorism. Of recent note: Navy SEALs even brought a highly trained dog with them on the raid of Osama Bin Laden's compound.

Special bonds are created between a dog and his handler. Time and time again you'll find dogs displaying acts of courage, heroism, and valor. Many of these dogs go on as unsung heroes. Only to be lauded in the hearts of their handlers. A few are commended in the light of others and receive the honor due them.

The U.S. Census Bureau has an audible story that highlights a distinguished service medal awarded to "Chips" in 1943 for bravery. According to the citation, Chips was awarded the medal for his "courageous action in single-handedly eliminating a dangerous machine gun nest and causing surrender of the crew." Four months later, the medal was rescinded when the War Department issued regulations prohibiting the award of such decorations to animals.

Sarbi, a black labrador retriever, worked in the Australian military as a sniffer dog and received the Purple Cross bravery award for service in Afghanistan.

Buster, a six-year old Springer Spaniel British war dog was lauded for breaking a resistance cell in Iraq and was awarded Britian's highest animal bravery medal.

A very moving War Dogs site and "K-9 Wall of Honor" can be found at The dogs of war are special breed indeed.

Photo information (Primary): A U.S. Army soldier with the 10th Special Forces Group and his military working dog jump off the ramp of a CH-47 Chinook helicopter from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment during water training over the Gulf of Mexico as part of exercise Emerald Warrior 2011 on March 1, 2011. Emerald Warrior is an annual two-week joint/combined tactical exercise sponsored by U.S. Special Operations Command designed to leverage lessons learned from operations Iraqi and Enduring Freedom to provide trained and ready forces to combatant commanders. DoD photo by Tech. Sgt. Manuel J. Martinez, U.S. Air Force. (Released) Foreign Policy had a great story that led off with this image.

Photo information (War Dog Cemetery): Santa Rita, Guam (Oct. 27, 2006) - Petty Officer 2nd Class Blake Soller, a Military Working Dog (MWD) handler pets the head of his MWD Rico, at the War Dog Cemetery located on Naval Base Guam. Soller is currently assigned to Naval Security Force Detachment Guam to the MWD kennel. U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class John F. Looney (RELEASED)

Photo information (Wounded Doberman in Jeep 4x4): War dog corporal Kurt receives comfort and first aid on a Jeep 4x4 after being wounded together with his Marine handler. U.S. National Archives.