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Date Posted: 14:18:27 05/13/04 ThuPDT
Author: Bill Cummings
Author Host/IP: 126.96.36.199
Subject: Ft. Benning War Dog Memorial - KIA Pedestal
War Dog Memorial
Sacrifice Field, Ft. Benning, GA
Killed in Action (KIA) K-9 Pedestal
Saturday, May 8, 2004
The dedication of the pedestal to honor the K9 heroes of World War II, Korea, Vietnam and Thailand was held on May 8, 2004, at Sacrifice Field, Ft. Benning, Georgia. Approximately 100 people attended the ceremonies. Jesse Mendez, with a lot of assistance, coordinated and planned the event. On a beautiful Georgia day, our canine heroes who so bravely gave their lives for our mission were honored for their service and sacrifice by handlers, friends and the general public.
The ceremony was opened by Jesse Mendez by introducing Dan Miller (USMC Scout) as the Master of Ceremonies for the dedication.
Posting of the Colors and introduction of the Flag Bearers and escorts followed. Flag Bearers, introduced by Bill Cummings (635th SPS), were representatives from all of our services (former military dog handlers of all types), civic organizations, and our current military personnel and active Military Working Dogs from the U S Navy and Air Force.
Pledge of Allegiance & the National Anthem:
Unveiling of Pedestal: The following representatives unveiled the KIA pedestal:
Air Force Sentry/Patrol Dogs Richard Deggans (377th SPS)
Army Scout & Sentry Dogs Kenneth Goss (65th CTT)
Marine Corp Dogs Fred Dorr (USMC Scout)
Navy Service Dogs Dick King (USN Sentry)
Presentation and Acceptance of the Pedestal:
Col. (Ret) Hadden - Accepting on behalf of Ft. Benning
Keynote Speaker: Captain (Ret.) Arthur J. Haggerty
Reading of the KIA Dogs:
Jesse Mendez (USA WMD Advisor) and other representatives. (Names of the KIA dogs were read by former handlers (some even read their own dogs name) and friends representing former handlers).
Tolling of the Bell: (One ring for each KIA dog)
Remembrance: Kenneth Goss (65th CTT)
Honor Guard & Rifle Salute: Ft. Benning personnel
Taps: Ft. Benning personnel
Former Military Working Dog Handlers in attendance:
Gary Mather, Sr. USA 38th IPSD
Johnny Mayo USA 39th IPSD & Buck
A.J. Sorensen USA 40th IPSD
Spencer Dixon USA 43rd IPSD
Jacky Bayne USA 48th IPSD
Monty Slough USA 63rd CTT
Kenneth Goss USA 65th CTT
Bill Hughes USA 65th CTT
Richard Snow USA MP - Friend of IPSD Handler
Jesse Mendez USA MWD Advisor
Dick King USN Sentry
Carl Thedford USN Sentry
Al Dodds USN Sentry
Bill Mahoney USN Sentry
Lou Cornell USMC Scout
Fred Dorr USMC Scout
John Guerrero USMC Scout
Dan Miller USMC Scout
Art Sproch USMC Scout
Charlie Fike USMC Scout
Perry Money USMC Mine & Booby Trap
Ronnie Rackley USAF 366th SPS
Richard Deggans USAF 377th SPS
Bill Wigginton USAF 388th SPS
Bill Cummings USAF 635th SPS
US Navy and US Air Force Military Working Dog Handlers:
U S Navy Kings Bay, GA.
MA1 Koehler & MWD Rick
MA1 Fisher & MWD Prinz
MA1 Stull & MWD Rocky
U S A F Warner Robbins AFB, Atlanta, GA
SSgt Ellison & MWD Benny
SSgt Manka & MWD Fannie
Civic Organizations: A special thank you to Ms. Dixie Whitman, and her very close friends representing the Internet GSD Club, CAESAR (Canine Assisted Emergency Search and Rescue), the German Shepherd Dog Club of Atlanta, and the German Shepherd Dog Club of America for all of their efforts and for providing the Flag Bearer escorts and many other efforts for the dedication ceremony.
"Id also like to thank all of those whose donations made this pedestal possible. Without your continued support, this would not have been possible. There is one major pedestal remaining to be placed, and that will be the one in honor of all of the War Dog handlers who were either KIA or MIA. To help in completion of this, donations can be made out in the name of the Columbus Monument Company and sent in care of Jesse Mendez, 1205 Bismark Road, Columbus, GA 31907-4013. Your Support is appreciated."
This posting was on behalf of the attendees at the dedication. It was a very proud moment and a great event.
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