Saturday, September 11, 2010
Canine Heroes of 9/11: We Will Never Forget
"If these dogs only knew what a difference they make. Certainly, there's nothing that can replace the precision of a dog's nose—and absolutely nothing that can replace a dog's heart." — Bob Sessions, rescue worker, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
It’s difficult to believe the ninth anniversary of 9/11 is upon us. In some ways, it is still too raw to even imagine that almost a decade has gone by since that tragic day. September 11th has impacted our lives forever and has touched everyone; families and friends left behind; New Yorkers, Americans, and those who visit our country. My heart goes out to all the families who lost loved ones during that tragic day.
Since FiveSibes is a canine blog, I’d like to reflect upon the call of duty the search and rescue (SAR) dogs, along with their handlers, answered on September 11, 2001, and their loyalty and perseverance to perform their jobs at New York City’s World Trade Center’s Ground Zero, the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., the Staten Island landfill, and the Pennsylvanian field. Please take a few moments to watch this video from the DogFiles that highlights the bravery and dedication of these dogs.
If you haven’t yet read the hauntingly beautiful book Dog Heroes of September 11th; A Tribute to America’s Search and Rescue Dogs by Nona Kilgore Bauer, I highly recommend it. It pays tribute to the heroic canines who worked dedicatedly during that tragic period of time. According to the publisher’s statement on the book jacket, “Kennel Club Books supports the National Disaster Search Dog Foundation (NDSDF) in its mission to produce certified search and rescue teams to protect our whole nation. A portion of the proceeds of Dog Heroes of September 11th will benefit the NDSDF.”
September 11th is a horrific story in the history of our country and the world. It is one that has so many heroes and heroines to respect, applaud, thank, and pray for, including the four-legged ones. Today is a time to reflect upon how proud and fortunate we are to be in America, the great “melting pot” with all of its freedoms and choices. Let us all give a moment of silence for those who lost their lives that fateful day.
To our soldiers and their war dogs, to the many loyal and dedicated rescue dogs and their handlers who aided in the 9/11 search and rescue detail, as well as those who are part of all the various K9 teams throughout our great nation and beyond…we honor and thank you.
I’d like to dedicate this blog to all of the 9/11 heroes; to all the emergency and civilian personnel who responded to help with the heart-wrenching search, rescue, and cleanup; to our soldiers here on the homefront and overseas for doing the work they do so we can enjoy the freedoms we do each and every day; and to the approximately 300-350 loyal, devoted SAR canine heroes of 9/11 and their handlers. We will never forget.
Other links of interest:
Dogs in the News: an article and photo gallery published September 15, 2001, just 6 days after 9/11.
AKC’s DOGNY: America’s Tribute to Search and Rescue Dogs. Four statues showcase canine heroes of 9/11.