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Five Hero Dogs Receive Medal of Courage Honors

Five Hero Dogs Receive Medal of Courage Honors
(Americanhumane.org)

By    |   Saturday, 14 October 2017 10:20 AM

Five dogs received the American Humane Lois Pope K-9 Medal of Courage during an awards ceremony held in Washington this week for their law enforcement and military service.

The ceremony brought together members of Congress, a Marine general, and other dignitaries to honor what the service dogs do around the world, reports The Washington Free Beacon.

The K9s, Alphie, Capa, Coffee, and Ranger each received a medal at the ceremony.  K9 Gabe's handler, Charles Shuck, accepted his dog's medal posthumously.

The dogs served in the U.S. Army, Marines, and the Transportation Security Administration, and were recognized for saving lives by uncovering bombs in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as explosives, drugs, and other contraband at the nation's airports and even providing security for top American officials.

Handler Lesley Runnels, who has worked and lived with 7-Explosive Detection Dog Alphie for the past three years, said the awards ceremony helps to remind people how much working dogs contribute.

"It really brings awareness to the dogs that are working right now, as we speak, throughout the world — oversees and in America at airports, police departments, and Amtrak," she said. "I mean, these dogs are really keeping this country safe and our Marines and service members safe."

Alphie was retired from military service in 2014 after serving in tours of duty in Afghanistan and Iraq. Handler Lance Cpl. William Herron, who served with Alphie in Afghanistan, reunited with the K9 at the ceremony, and commented that he "couldn't trust a human the way I trusted him."

Capa, a 10-year-old German shepherd, had already been awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal for meritorious service during his deployments in Iraq with handler U.S. Navy Master-at-Arms Petty Officer 2nd Class Megan Wooster.

He has also participated in missions to protect the president, first lady and the secretary of Defense.

Coffee, a 13-year-old chocolate lab, was in Afghanistan as a bomb-sniffing Army dog, all with handler U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class James Bennett.

Ranger, an eight-year-old black lab, was with the Marines in both Afghanistan and Iraq, where he worked to uncover IEDs and save lives. He was retired from military service in 2012, after suffering a heat stroke, and has been adopted by retired police sergeant Kirk Adams and his wife.

Yellow lab Gabe, who died in 2013, was in more than 200 combat missions, as a specialized Army search dog. Working with his handler, Sgt. 1st Class Chuck Shuck Gabe helped find 26 explosives and weapons caches.

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Five dogs received the American Humane Lois Pope K-9 Medal of Courage during an awards ceremony held in Washington this week for their law enforcement and military service.
hero, dogs, courage, medal, honor
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2017-20-14
Saturday, 14 October 2017 10:20 AM
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