Hero Canine Of 9/11: Remembered Extra Than 20 Years On

flag and flower at the 911 memorial

Roughly 300 canine activity pressure members responded alongside over 10,000 emergency rescue employees to the 9/11 assaults. Skilled in rescue and remedy, these canine endured the bodily and psychological burden of the precarious, smoldering ruins and transitioned from search-and-rescue to restoration to emotional assist.

Below harsh, unfamiliar circumstances, the work was as grueling for the canine because it was significant for these needing consolation and care. The hero canine of 9/11 redefined the paradigm for future generations of service and search-and-rescue canine. As the trouble they put forth continues making an impression, it’s applicable to mirror on their tales and sacrifices.

hepper-dog-paw-divider 3

High 10 Hero Canine Of 9/11

1. Appollo (German Shepherd)

Appollo was a part of the NYPD Okay-9 unit and the primary canine at Floor Zero. Arriving inside quarter-hour after the assaults, the 9-year-old German Shepherd and his associate, Officer Peter Davis, waded by means of waist-deep water to succeed in the positioning. The soaking-wet Appollo nearly instantly fell right into a gap, solely to burst out amid a raging fireball, forcing Davis to tamp out burning embers on his fur.

Regardless of the speedy threats, Appollo was undeterred. For weeks, he put in 18-hour days till his handler needed to bodily restrain him from dashing into the pile to proceed his search.

His story of coronary heart and hope made Appollo the last word image of the canine presence. He later earned the AKC’s Award for Canine Excellence. Representing all 9/11 search-and-rescue canine, he additionally obtained the PDSA’s Dickin Medal, thought-about the animal equal of the Victoria Cross given for acts of bravery and devotion.

2. Trakr (German Shepherd)

Trakr was a police canine from Halifax, Nova Scotia, educated in contraband detection. Although they by no means obtained an official name for help on 9/11, he and his handler, James Symington, made the 15-hour journey to assist with the restoration effort.

Though Trakr suffered from smoke inhalation, exhaustion, and, later, neurological issues from his time at Floor Zero, his work was among the many most impactful of all rescue canine over the two weeks following the assaults.

On September twelfth, Trakr found Genelle Guzman, a Port Authority worker, alive underneath the North Tower. Genelle had reached the thirteenth flooring in the course of the evacuation when the 97 flooring overhead collapsed on her. For 27 hours, she remained pinned and unable to speak or transfer, and it was solely Trakr’s eager nostril and dedication that allowed rescuers to seek out her. She was the final of the 20 survivors to emerge from the rubble.

3. Bretagne (Golden Retriever)

Bretagne was solely 2 years previous when she made the 1,600-mile journey from Houston to New York Metropolis to assist in the rescue effort following the 9/11 assaults. Embarking along with her handler, Denise Corliss, on Texas Job Power 1, the Golden Retriever was new to search-and-rescue however rapidly left her mark as a permanent image of the canine’ invaluable work.

Bretagne would reply to quite a few different disasters within the ensuing years, together with Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. In retirement, she didn’t cease impacting communities. She served as a studying help canine for varsity kids and helped practice different search-and-rescue canine.

Because the final of the 9/11 canine to go away, Bretagne remained a trustworthy servant to communities throughout the nation from her earliest years to her loss of life in 2016. In 2017, her hometown group in Cypress erected a bronze statue of Bretagne close to the Cy-Honest Volunteer Hearth Division the place she labored.

4. Roselle (Labrador Retriever)

Not each hero canine arrived for the aftermath of the 9/11 assaults. In Roselle’s case, she skilled it firsthand as one of many 1000’s working within the World Commerce Middle because the planes struck.

Roselle was a seeing-eye canine. Her handler, Michael Hingson, labored as a gross sales director for a enterprise with places of work within the North Tower, which was the primary of the tower’s to be hit. Michael was stationed on the 78th flooring when the hijacked Boeing 767 hit his constructing 18 flooring above.

After making certain his group’s evacuation, Hingson started the 1,463-step descent, relying on Roselle’s poise, consciousness, and problem-solving expertise to make it to security.

Roselle’s efforts that day to save lots of Michael and preserve calm for these round her earned her the American Humane Affiliation’s American Hero Canine of the Yr award, the AKC’s ACE award, and the Dickin Medal.

5. Sage (Border Collie)

Since she was 18 months previous, Sage traveled the globe to take part in high-profile rescue operations with FEMA. The Border Collie visited seven international locations by the tip of her life, engaged on missions corresponding to Hurricane Katrina, Hurricane Rita, and the Natalee Holloway disappearance in Aruba. She would later go on a number of excursions in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Although these missions helped construct her legacy, Sage was already a longtime hero as a result of her work throughout 9/11. At 2 years previous, she was new to go looking and rescue when she went to work after the Pentagon assault. There, she earned popularity of finding the physique of the terrorist who hijacked American Airways Flight 77.

As one among a choose group of FEMA canine licensed on the highest degree, Sage gained the AKC’s ACE award in 2009 and have become an American Humane Affiliation Hero Canine award recipient in 2011.

6. Ricky (Rat Terrier)

Ricky, a Rat Terrier, was the smallest of all 9/11 heroes and an instrumental backup for the heftier search canine at Floor Zero.  Ricky was notably shiny from a younger age, and he was a member of the Puget Sound City Search and Rescue group, touring all the best way from Seattle to help to find survivors and stays.

Ricky searched the World Commerce Middle ruins for ten straight days together with his handler, Janet Linker. At solely 17 kilos, Ricky may traverse precarious options and squeeze by means of slender holes his associate Thunder, a 64-pound Golden Retriever, may by no means navigate. Collectively, they uncovered a number of victims and artifacts, providing much-needed closure for households.

7. Jake (Labrador Retriever)

Jake would be the unlikeliest of all 9/11 hero canine. Utah Job Power canine handler Mary Flood rescued the black Lab at 10 months. Jake was residing as a stray, doubtless deserted as a result of hip dysplasia. Following corrective surgical procedure, his again proper leg was 2 inches shorter than the left, elevating issues about his capacity as a search canine.

Jake erased all doubt, changing into wilderness search and FEMA-certified by the tip of 1997. 4 years later, he responded to 9/11, spending 17 days at Floor Zero.

Though he educated for reside rescue, Jake strived to assist in any approach he may, happening quite a few journeys to seek out stays. For the rescue employees round him, his relentlessly upbeat perspective and playfulness provided motivation and aid from the emotional burden.

8. Hansen (Belgian Shepherd)

Hansen lasted the longest of any rescue canine on the WTC website, working an astonishing 150 days. Among the many many victims Hansen recovered, two had been lacking law enforcement officials, Sgt. Michael Curtin and Officer John Perry, who was as a result of retire the day he bumped into the crumbling World Commerce Middle.

The dedication Hansen and his handler, Steve Smaldon, confirmed was distinctive amongst all responding groups. The city of Lindenhurst, NY, the place Hansen was stationed, honored him in 2008 with a 300-pound cement statue.

9. Riley (Golden Retriever)

Though Riley was solely a live-find canine, his work as a member of FEMA Pennsylvania Job Power 1 symbolizes the adaptability the 9/11 canine confirmed within the face of hazard and despair.

Hopes of discovering survivors light after the primary day. Riley transitioned to finding cadavers, displaying his pressing want to assist in any approach doable. He turned the face of the canine effort at Floor Zero with the enduring image of employees hoisting him alone in a Stokes basket out of a 60-foot-deep crater. The picture gained nationwide recognition, inspiring important motion and assist across the rescue canine group.

10.  Salty (Labrador Retriever)

Like Roselle, Salty was a service canine helping his blind proprietor within the North Tower on the day of the assaults. Following the impression at 8:46 a.m., Salty coaxed his handler, Omar Rivera, to evacuate and guided him by means of the chaotic 71-story journey.

Amid the concern and confusion, Omar launched Salty from his result in give the canine an opportunity to run away from the constructing. Devoted to his obligation, Salty refused to go away Omar’s facet, as a substitute holding near convey him to security and finally save his life. On March 5, 2002, Salty shared the stage with Roselle as the 2 obtained PDSA Dickin Medals.

Divider-Dog- New

How Many Canine Died on 9/11?

One canine, a Port Authority bomb-sniffing canine named Sirius, perished in the course of the 9/11 assaults. He and his associate, Sgt. David Lim, had been on patrol within the South Tower on the day of the assaults. When the primary airplane struck the North Tower, Lim secured Sirius in his kennel earlier than dashing to the adjoining constructing to help civilians.

Lim was within the North Tower when it collapsed. He was one among 16 folks descending Stairwell B who survived, caught underneath the rubble for six hours and unaware as to the destiny of his associate.

Searchers discovered Sirius’s stays within the winter of 2002, giving him a full honor guard upon his elimination. Lim and his fellow officers preserved his reminiscence in a canine run in Battery Park devoted to him and a commemorative plaque within the 9/11 Memorial Museum.



Singular sacrifices left lasting legacies. The unimaginable hardships the hero canine of 9/11 confronted within the weeks following the assaults left an indelible mark on the rescue group, creating new views that may assist future SAR canine thrive of their roles. Just like the occasions of that day, the arduous work of the 9/11 canine echoes by means of the generations, providing timeless classes in braveness, hope, and resolve.

Featured Picture Credit score: Spinel, Shutterstock

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *