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Memorial Day: Remembering our servicemen, servicewomen and service dogs

The Memorial Day weekend signifies the start of summer and for dog lovers that means more trips to the park, beach, Frisbee-tossing and swimming with our four-legged friends.  But more importantly, it’s a time to reflect and memorialize the sacrifices of our nation’s armed services. 

Here at Voyce and around the country, we’ll be pausing to reflect on the holiday, take the opportunity to remember our fallen servicemen and servicewomen – including military service dogs, and recognize some of the ways that dogs and their handlers have served with distinction.  They richly deserve attention and praise.

Military working and service dogs save countless lives and help so many troops who just need a friendly face to help boost their morale.  There are compelling stories of Military service dogs from WWI through present day, including Stubby, the first dog ever given rank in the U.S. Army, to the famous Marine Dobermans in the Pacific Theatre of WWII, given their own memorial at the War Dog museum in Guam.  These canine heroes lived, bonded and served side-by-side with our veterans.

America's Military working dogs are estimated to have saved more than 10,000 casualties in Vietnam alone and bravely served our country in Operation Desert Storm.  The stories of service dogs serving in present danger zones are many.

Today’s service dogs are truly unique, they are trained to recognize booby traps, tunnels, weapons caches, mines, warn troops about ambushes, and save lives by dragging wounded soldiers to safety.

On a personal note, a member of our Voyce leadership team and USMC veteran would like to highlight his first service dog Shadow, the best untrained patrol dog ever, who served with distinction at Combat Outpost Rocco in Kapisa, Afghanistan in 2009.  Voyce honors all the Marines, Soldiers, Sailors, and Airmen who sacrificed their lives for our way of life. The fallen and their families are in our thoughts and prayers.