Since we lost the brave canine associate producer of The Teri O’Brien Show one week ago today, I found this story especially heartbreaking and touching.
From The Huffington Post:
Chicago Police Department has given Officer Rachel an emotional farewell call on its radio channel.
Rachel had served 10 years in the department, where she worked tracking explosives. She recently developed a rapidly spreading cancer, according to Chicago Police Department’s Facebook page.
In her lifetime, the dog had protected the president, first lady and foreign dignitaries, reported the Chicago Tribune, which also has audio of the touching last call.
“All units standby,” a dispatcher said Sunday. “7323 canine Rachel. 7323 canine Rachel. No response for canine Rachel. This is a final call for Chicago Police Explosives canine Rachel.”
She was put down 15 minutes later.
Officer Charles Kocanda had trained Rachel. “Our condolences go out to her handler, Officer Chuck Kocanda, who worked with her daily to make sure she was the best she could be,” the police department said in its Facebook post.
From The Chicago Tribune:
She rode the trains and buses with Kocanda. She knew when it was time to work, and she would wait at the door for Kocanda before each shift. If he had on his dark uniform, she knew she was going to work. If he wore his blue shirt, she knew she was staying home and waited in the window for him.
“This is a final call for Chicago Police Explosives canine Rachel.”
The dispatcher read the star number assigned to the dog, similar to a police officer’s badge number. She died exactly one year after searching Capuano’s funeral.
“Canine Rachel has faithfully served the Chicago Police Department since June 2006. On December 18, 2016, rest in peace canine Rachel. Correct time is 0911 hours. This is the last call.”
“18 December 2016, Citywide 1 radio’s clear.”
Other handlers were able to say goodbye to Rachel and she was put down about 15 minutes later.
RIP, precious girl. You served us well, as so many of your species have and will continue to do.