On September 11, 2001, after the towers collapsed, search and rescue teams scrambled to ground zero to search for survivors stuck under the piles of steel and concrete. Of these search and rescue teams, many had a canine member to lead them where any potential survivors could be.
Since then, many of those dogs who have served on that day have passed away, and on Monday (June 6, 2016), the last 9/11 of the search and rescue dogs had passed away.
Bretagne, a golden retriever, laid next to her owner/search and rescue handler, Denise Corliss, in her final moments. Bretagne suffered from kidney failure and joint pain – the 16-year-old dog didn’t eat for several days straight. After spending the previous night together in peace and quite, Denise and her husband brought the rescue dog to Fairfield Animal Hospital to be put to rest.
As she was taken to the hospital, several members from different organizations (such as Texas Task Force 1 and Cy-Fair Volunteer Fire Department) came to honor and salute Bretagne for her work and service.
Bretagne and Denise Corliss had worked a great amount with search and rescue. Including the 9/11 attacks, the two worked together in disasters such as Hurricane Katrina, Hurricane Ivan and more. At the age of 9, the golden retriever retired from search and rescue work. However, that didn’t stop Bretagne from being happy and adventurous as she could be.
Bretagne would have turned 17 in August.
Reddit user TheBrainofBrian states something powerful about Bretagne and dogs in general:
“Sometimes when I’m laying next to my dog I stare at her and I wonder if she knows one day she’ll go away. I wonder about if she knows how much I’ll miss her and how I worry my heart won’t ever recover from it. I’ll stare at her with tears in my eyes, and she’ll look back and give me a lick or two on the cheek.
I think she knows, but I think she’s more brave than I’ll ever be. I think Bretagne was more brave than I’ll ever be.
I wish I could be half the person that dogs are.”
Let us honor all those dogs who served on that dreadful day.
Please SHARE this in memory of Bretagne.