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Photo credit Eduardo Contreras/UT San Diego

Honoring military dogs and their handlers

In a memorial garden not far from Camp Pendleton Naval Hospital, a group of veterans has put up a new monument.

The 6-foot-tall, black granite spire is meant to honor military dog handlers — the men and women who team up with canines in combat. It is a tribute to fallen Dawgs, as the handlers call themselves, and their heroic companions.

It is the first such monument among a handful of others in the hilltop Marine Corps Memorial Garden overlooking the ocean.


AETC/CV speaks at first national MWD monument dedication ceremony

10/28/2013 - JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas -- Lt. Gen. James Holmes, Air Education and Training Command vice commander, was a part of history Oct. 28 when he had the chance to speak at a ceremony unveiling the first national monument dedicated to U.S. Military Working Dog teams.

The dedication and unveiling ceremony completes a quest to nationally recognize military working dogs and handlers started in 2001 by John Burnam, a Vietnam scout dog handler and author of two books on military working dogs.

"This is a great day for Joint Base San Antonio and the Department of Defense," said Brig. Gen. Bob LaBrutta, 502nd Air Base Wing and JBSA commander. "To the working dog members and the dogs in the audience, this is your day. I'm so glad Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland could be the home of this monument. "

The Department of Defense Military Working Dog program, the world's largest training center for military dogs and handlers, has been based at JBSA-Lackland since 1958. The DOD Military Working Dog Veterinary Service and the Holland Working Dog Hospital, the largest for military working dogs, are also located on JBSA-Lackland.


McChord Reservist seeks to create memorial for military working dog

9/9/2011 - HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah -- More than a year ago, military working dog Marco did what many service members hope to do someday--retire.

However, as Marco is 14 years old - equivalent to a 98-year-old man- his adopted family in Washington is making preparations for his future hoping they will be allowed to honor Marco for his service as a veteran.