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memorial day: the dogs(and a bear) of war

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posted on May, 28 2012 @ 01:58 PM
well its memorial day so i figured id try to inform you all about some of the less talked about heroes of the animal kingdom that have fought side by side and in some cases given there lives in protection of those they served.

starting off with Voytek the Soldier Bear

A campaign has been launched to build a permanent memorial to a bear which spent much of its life in Scotland - after fighting in World War II. The bear - named Voytek - was adopted in the Middle East by Polish troops in 1943, becoming much more than a mascot. The large animal even helped their armed forces to carry ammunition at the Battle of Monte Cassino.

The bear was cub purchased by polish solders from a boy in the Iranian desert,and after being bottle fed (and apparently given cigarets and beer as well) it grew up to be a formidable ally for the poles in their various campaigns. It was awarded medals and became the icon of the 22nd artillery battalion for carrying shells while under German fire to resupply polish artillery men. additional links first one having strong language so be forwarned

Like any soldier, he loved to relax with a cigarette and a bottle of beer when out of the firing line. But in the heat of battle, he became an inspiring figure - bravely passing ammunition along to supply the guns. All the men in the Second Polish Transport Company agreed that the recruit they called Voytek was the perfect comrade. Read more:

moving on to smokey the Yorkshire terrier

TextIn February 1944, Smoky was found by an American soldier in an abandoned foxhole in the New Guinea jungle. She was already a young adult Yorkie (fully grown). The soldiers initially thought the small dog belonged to the Japanese, but after taking her to a nearby prisoner-of-war camp they realized she did not understand commands in Japanese or English. Another GI then sold Smoky to Corporal William A. Wynne of Cleveland, Ohio, for two Australian pounds (equal to $6.44 at that time)—the price paid to the seller so he could return to his poker game.[2][3]

according to the animal planet investigation smokey was the first ever official use of therapy dog (of record)
and is credited with keeping an air base from having to be shut down in the pacific. By her going through a very narrow pipe and running a cable that kept them from having to dig up the entire runway,thus when a Japanese attack force showed up they could sortie planes to attack the Japanese fighters in the airbases defense(the links will go into much more detail)


Tich (1940–1959) was a mixed-breed military dog during the Second World War. She was awarded the Dickin Medal in 1949 for her actions during the war as a battalion mascot to the King's Royal Rifle Corps. The Dickin Medal is considered to be the animal's Victoria Cross. After the war she lived with her battalion handler at his home in the UK. After she died she was buried in the People's Dispensary for Sick Animals (PDSA)'s Ilford Animal Cemetery.

Tich being found during the western dessert campaign was adopted by the 1st battalion kings rifle regiment.Serving as a mascot and sentry for the force and often accompanied his owner on patrols, by riding on the bonnet of his bren carrier. Awarded the Dickin medal for " For loyalty, courage and devotion to duty under hazardous conditions of war 1941 to 1945, while serving with the 1st King's Rifle Corps in North Africa and Italy"

Cheif petty officer Sinbad k9c(official rank)

Chief Dog (K9C) Sinbad, USCG, Retired, (b. around 1937, d. 30 December 1951) was a mixed-breed canine sailor aboard the US Coast Guard Cutter George W. Campbell. Sinbad served 11 years' sea duty in the United States Coast Guard, including combat in World War II. Enlisted independently, he never had an owner or master, and was the only Coastguardsman to be the subject of a biography until the dawn of the twenty-first century.

it seems that he was originally purchased as a gift for a chief boatswain mate's girl friend. Because of his propensity for booze and coffee they allowed him to enlist(by signing his paw print)and was issued his own red cross identification number.
His greatest achievement came after the ship he was on rammed a German submarine and after which the ship had to be left with a minimal crew.Treated as a good luck charm he raised morale while the boat was being towed back to port,he was awarded the following medals

American Defense Service Medal, American Campaign Medal, European-African-MiddleEastern Campaign Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, WWII Victory Medal and Navy Occupation Service Medal.[15]

My personal favorite and to my knowledge the highest ranking animal to ever serve the united states: Sergeant Stubby

Sergeant Stubby (1916 or 1917 – March 16, 1926), was the most decorated war dog of World War I and the only dog to be promoted to sergeant through combat.

The noise and strain that shattered the nerves of many of his comrades did not impair Stubby's spirits. Not because he was unconscious of danger. His angry howl while a battle raged and his mad canter from one part of the lines to another indicated realization." - New York Times Obituary

found on Yale college in 1917 by John Robert Conroy and smuggled aboard the ss Minnesota(transport ship). Was granted a commission in 1918 after apparently being taught the bugle calls and to salute superiors(raising paw to his forehead)

While at first destined to be just a mascot this brave little pup had great ambitions(served in 17 battles and 4 major offenses).
He was wounded just north of the city of Soissons after being bombarded for a full month by conventional and chemical artillery but even mustard gas was not enough to keep this pit bull down, and as a result of surviving the chemical attack it was described as him having a 6th sense for when artillery(chemical or otherwise).

He earned the admiration and respect of his fellow barking until all men had their chemical gear on and then and only then would he retreat into the trenches for safety(no animal chemical warfare suits yet least not for dogs)Wounded again in 1918 by grenade fragments out side of schieprey(france) he again returned to combat unfazed and in time to participate in the liberation of Chateau Thierry.

For these actions in addition to the two purple hearts he was also issued a "allied uniform" composed of flags of all the allied nations by the villagers of said french city in addition to the uniform already made for him by the 102nd which displayed his other medals and citations(from above source Purple Heart, the Republic of France Grande War Medal, the Medal of Verdun, and medals for every campaign in which he'd served. )
And finally in September 1918 he single handedly captured a German spy,who after interrogation gave up critical information to allied generals,continued in next post
edit on 28-5-2012 by KilrathiLG because: (no reason given)

edit on 28-5-2012 by KilrathiLG because: trying to clean it up a bit

posted on May, 28 2012 @ 02:02 PM
from previous post....

for these actions he was promoted to Sargent and actually out ranked his owner and as a further insult to the German spy he was stripped of his Knights cross and it was pinned on Sargent Stubbys chest.

the commander of the allied expeditionary force(black jack Pershing) personally pinned a "dog hero" medal onto his uniform(perhaps the for bearer of the Dickin media) as well as free food for life from the ymca.

he is now on display at the smithsonian

Stubby joined up. One morning a bugle sounded the departure from camp. Crammed into a train loaded with equipment, he was started South. He knew not where he was speeding. His recent contacts with scholasticism, however, stood him in good stead. Tennyson had said something memorable - "His not to reason why, his but to do and die".

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edit on 28-5-2012 by KilrathiLG because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 28 2012 @ 02:08 PM
link Sarbi

Sarbi is an Australian special forces explosives detection dog that spent almost 14 months missing in action (MIA) in Afghanistan having disappeared during an ambush on 2 September 2008. Sarbi was later rediscovered by an American soldier, and was reunited with Australian forces pending repatriation to Australia. Her name is sometimes spelt 'Sabi'.

our first modern war dog and our first from down under. Sabbi was deployed as part of the Australian army operation slipper(afganistan) and she served with distinction through one tour before going MIA for over 13 months before being reunited with her handlers (and allied forces) for her actions she was awarded the Australian purple cross
edit on 28-5-2012 by KilrathiLG because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 28 2012 @ 02:12 PM
Rip the terrier

Rip (died 1946), a mixed-breed terrier, was a Second World War search and rescue dog who was awarded the Dickin Medal for bravery in 1945. He was found in Poplar, London, in 1940 by an Air Raid Warden, and became the service's first search and rescue dog. He is credited with saving the lives of over 100 people. He was the first of twelve Dickin Medal winners to be buried in the PDSA's cemetery in Ilford, Essex.

Found in the bombed out ruins of a home during the battle of Brittan. Rip became an invaluable asset and possibly the first search and rescue dog on record(dispute having no training and being a stray), and is credited with saving over 100 lives in his career as a military dog. Rip was the first dog to be buried in PDSA cemetary in milford essex with this quote on his tombstone.

"We also serve" - for the dog whose body lies here played his part in the Battle of Britain.

edit on 28-5-2012 by KilrathiLG because: clean things up a bit

posted on May, 28 2012 @ 02:16 PM

"For rescuing L/Cpl. Muldoon from drowning under heavy shell fire at the assault of Walcheren, November 1944, while serving with the 6th Cameronians (SR)."[2] Following the war, Khan and Muldoon were reunited at a war dogs parade at Wembley Stadium.[3]
Rifleman Khan

In November 1944 the battalion was part of the Allied force sent to attack the island of Walcheren in the Netherlands, as part of the Battle of the Scheldt. The island was of strategic importance and needed to be taken in order for the invasion of Germany to take place. Khan and Muldoon were in an assault craft approaching the island by sea when a spotlight came upon them and the boat came under heavy fire. The boat capsized, sending the soldiers into the water. Khan swam to shore and began to look for Muldoon, who could not swim. While still under heavy shelling, Khan swam the 200 yards (180 m) back to Muldoon and pulled him from the water onto the shore. He continued to pull his handler past the muddy shoreline and up onto solid ground, before collapsing next to him.[1]

Saved his handler and is quite the local hero in scotland for his acts he was awarded a dicken medal. While not as prestigious as some of the others should be credited as well.
edit on 28-5-2012 by KilrathiLG because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 28 2012 @ 02:20 PM
Rags the terrier

Rags (c. 1916 - March 22, 1936),[1] born in Paris, France, was a mixed breed terrier who became the U.S. 1st Infantry Division's dog-mascot in World War I. He was adopted into the 1st Division on July 14, 1918 in the Montmartre section of Paris, France. Rags remained its mascot until his death in Washington, D.C. on March 22, 1936.[2] He learned to run messages between the rear headquarters and the front lines, and provided early warning of incoming shells. Rags achieved great notoriety and celebrity war dog fame when he saved many lives in the Meuse-Argonne Campaign by delivering a vital message despite being bombed, gassed and partially blinded

While primarily serving as a mascot and occasional messenge he was best known for imitating the soilders behavior (ducking shelfire etc).
Because of this became an asset to his fellow troopers(as he would duck before they could even hear the shells)and in addition to other quirky behavior he would salute the flag and fellow troops as it was being lowered and even had the daily routine of touring whatever base he was on.

edit on 28-5-2012 by KilrathiLG because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 28 2012 @ 02:25 PM
Nemo A534

In the silence of darkness, the Airman Robert Throneburg and Sentry Dog Nemo patrolled near a graveyard on Tan Son Nhut Air base on the night of December 4, 1966. On security patrol, Nemo alerted Throneburg to a group of hidden VC."Watch him," said Airman Throneburg. The dog's muscles tensed for action."Get him!" -- was the next command and Nemo lunged savagely forward, into the enemy's nest. Airman Throneburg followed close behind. In the first moments of encounter, Airman Throneburg and Nemo killed two of the VC. But, before additional security police could reach them, Airman Throneburg was wounded in the left side shoulder and then spun by the first bullet wound and was wounded again in the back left shoulder. After being woundd Throneburg radioed the insurgents locations before passing out. In the action, Nemo's eye was hit and his snout was creased by enemy bullets. Despite being wounded and blinded in one eye, Nemo returned to his handler. Crawling across Throneburg's body, Nemo guarded his handler against any who dared to come near until medical help could arrive. The residing Vet had to eventually be called in to remove Nemo from atop his handlers body. The remaining enemy were soon killed by other security police. Nemo lost one of his eyes, but recovered from his wounds and was credited not only with saving the life of Airman Throneburg, but indirectly prevented further destruction of life and property at Tan Son Nhut.

The above really says all that needs to be said but as this is our first Nam era dog ill try to go into a bit of detail on my own.These are some of the really truly forgotten (and abandoned) war dogs.

despite having his eye gone and being shot in the face this dog defended his fellow solider until aid got there and for these actions he is credited with stopping the shameful trend of leaving the Vietnam war dogs in country after the war,because of his actions almost all war dogs are now repatriated.
edit on 28-5-2012 by KilrathiLG because: grammer etc

posted on May, 28 2012 @ 02:29 PM

Lex is the first active duty, fully fit military working dog to be granted early retirement in order to be adopted. Working for his United States Marine Corps handler Corporal Dustin J. Lee in the Iraq War, he was wounded in an attack that killed Lee, and subsequently awarded an honorary Purple Heart.

Lex a vetran of the iraq war was a pioneer in the fact that now military dogs are being eligible for early retirement.

Before the standard was to put down the dogs when they are no longer useful to their master's......he finished his service by being a comfort animal to wounded Veterans
edit on 28-5-2012 by KilrathiLG because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 28 2012 @ 02:36 PM
link another favorite of mine as i feel this perticular mutt is the perfect ambassador for the royal navy.

Just Nuisance was the only dog ever to be officially enlisted in the Royal Navy. He was a Great Dane who from 1939-44 served at HMS Afrikander, a Royal Navy shore establishment in Simon's Town, South Africa. He died in 1944 and was buried with full military honours.

after being "adopted" by the Ratings he began to follow the troops back to the naval base and into the town where he lived and pretty much set up shop on the gangplanks of docked ships.Known for following the men as they would go around town on the buses and trains(causing a few hiccups for the pup)as well as being a general nuisance(hence the name) to those trying to board ships when he was in the way.

As a result of his troubles(not having train fare) he was enlisted in the royal navy (and thus givien free passage on the trains) .

dispite several disciplinary issues(awol,loss of collar,sleeping in improper area,and failure to leave the pub after closing and finally eating/attacking several of the other boats mascots) and dispite several punishments (loss of bones for a week).Hhe was promoted from oridanry seamen to able seaman with behavior like this how could you not enlist him.

edit on 28-5-2012 by KilrathiLG because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 28 2012 @ 02:39 PM
Judy the pointer

now first off this one is a little more sad then most of them as her tale as a Japanese pow is one of the sadder things ive read today. as i was unaware of this before today she is credited with saving not only the lives of her crew when the boat was going down but being a constant morale boost to troops who were interned in several Japanese pow camps during the pacific campaign.

The radio broadcast by the strangely named Prisoner of War ‘81A Gloergoer, Medan’ caused quite a stir among listeners all round the world. Not because she was nervous about being interviewed live for the BBC’s coverage of Britain’s Victory Parade on June 8, 1946. Or that she’d said something daft, inappropriate or even clammed up with a fit of nerves. Hardly. She had plenty to say. It’s just that her speech was a series of happy staccato barks and went something like this: ‘Woof woof woof woof woof woof.’ Devotee: Judy met Frank Williams in a prisoner of war camp in Medan in 1942. He shared his daily handful of maggoty boiled rice with Jud and in return she alerted him to scorprions, snakes and if guards were near Devotee: Judy met Frank Williams in a prisoner of war camp in Medan in 1942. He shared his daily handful of maggoty boiled rice with Jud and in return she alerted him to scorprions, snakes and if guards were near For Japanese POW 81A was a pure-bred liver-and-white English pointer called Judy — the only dog officially recognised as a Prisoner of War in World War II and viewed as a guardian angel and symbol of hope and courage for thousands of Allied troops imprisoned and tortured by the Japanese in the Far East. She saved countless lives, alerted Allied troops to dozens of hostile Japanese aircraft before they could even hear them and protected her beloved men against scorpions, crocodiles, tigers, poisonous snakes — and the brutal Japanese and Korean prison guards.

i will leave you to research her your self as any words i could use would not do this creature justice
edit on 28-5-2012 by KilrathiLG because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 28 2012 @ 02:43 PM

Horrie was the unofficial mascot for the 2/1st Machine Gun Battalion of the Second Australian Imperial Force.

In 1942, Moody was repatriated to Australia, but due to stringent quarantine laws, was unable to take Horrie with him. Moody decided to smuggle the dog home in a canvas bag, which was reinforced with wooden slats so that the dog could breathe. In 1945, the law caught up with Moody who was ordered by Quarantine officials to surrender Horrie to be put down. Instead, Moody substituted another dog from the pound, who was shot in place of Horrie. Horrie lived out his natural life near Corryong, in rural Victoria.

it never ceases to amaze me the ingenuity of pet owners who are not willing to give up on there battle buddy's or more accurately there family.

while mostly a mascot the role of morale is very important on the battlefield and should be remembered for there aid and service during trying times

edit on 28-5-2012 by KilrathiLG because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 28 2012 @ 02:45 PM

The small six-month old black and white male kelpie was found whimpering, having suffered a broken front leg, under a destroyed mess hut at Darwin Air Force base on 19 February 1942, following the first wave of Japanese attacks on Darwin.[2][3][4] Airforce personnel took him to a field hospital, but the doctor insisted he couldn't fix a "man" with a broken leg without knowing his name and serial number.[5] The doctor repaired and plastered his leg after the airforce personnel replied that his name was "Gunner" and his number was "0000".[6] Gunner entered the airforce on that day.[5]

employed by the australian airforce during ww2 he acted as an early warning system(20 minute warning in atvance of attacks) for incoming japnese attacks and served his master loyaly

posted on May, 28 2012 @ 02:48 PM

Gander was a Newfoundland dog posthumously awarded the Dickin Medal, the "animals' VC", in 2000 for his deeds in World War II,[1] the first such award in over 50 years.


from potentially getting put down to being the first dog to get the posthumous Dickin medal in over 50 years

For saving the lives of Canadian infantrymen during the Battle of Lye Mun on Hong Kong Island in December 1941. On three documented occasions, Gander, the Newfoundland mascot of the Royal Rifles of Canada, engaged the enemy as his regiment joined the Winnipeg Grenadiers, members of Battalion Headquarters "C" Force and other Commonwealth troops in their courageous defence of the island. Twice Gander's attacks halted the enemy's advance and protected groups of wounded soldiers. In a final act of bravery, the war dog was killed in action gathering a grenade. Without Gander's intervention, many more lives would have been lost in the assault.[1]

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posted on May, 28 2012 @ 02:50 PM

Chips the dog was the most decorated war dog from World War II. Chips was a German Shepherd-Collie-Siberian Husky mix owned by Edward J. Wren of Pleasantville, NY. During the war, private citizens like Wren donated their dogs for duty. Chips shipped out to the War Dog Training Center, Front Royal, Virginia, in 1942 for training as a sentry dog. He served with the 3rd Infantry Division in North Africa, Sicily, Italy, France and Germany. His handler was Pvt. John P. Rowell. Chips served as a sentry dog for the Roosevelt-Churchill conference in 1943. Later that year, during the invasion of Sicily, Chips and his handler were pinned down on the beach by an Italian machine-gun team. Chips broke from his handler and jumped into the pillbox, attacking the gunners. The four crewmen were forced to leave the pillbox and surrendered to US troops. In the fight he sustained a scalp wound and powder burns. Later that day, he helped take 10 Italians prisoner. For his actions during the war, he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, Silver Star, and Purple Heart;

had not heard about this fellow before today but it seems Disney made a movie about him a few years ago. Seems like he was quite the ferocious opponent on the battlefield while at the same time encouraging his fellow solders to keep going and keep fighting the good fight.
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posted on May, 28 2012 @ 02:53 PM

Bamse (Norwegian for "teddy bear") (1937 - 22 July 1944) was a St. Bernard that became the heroic mascot of the Free Norwegian Forces during the Second World War. He became a symbol of Norwegian freedom during the war.


Bamse was in the service of Norway during ww2 and is a national hero and was crucial in the morale of his various crews over the years as well as acting as a mediator of disputes between crew members.
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posted on May, 28 2012 @ 02:54 PM

The Dickin Medal was instituted in 1943 in the United Kingdom by Maria Dickin to honour the work of animals in war. It is a bronze medallion, bearing the words "For Gallantry" and "We Also Serve" within a laurel wreath, carried on a ribbon of striped green, dark brown and pale blue.[1] It is awarded to animals that have displayed "conspicuous gallantry or devotion to duty while serving or associated with any branch of the Armed Forces or Civil Defence Units".[1] The award is commonly referred to as "the animals' Victoria Cross".[1][2][3]

figured id post this as i had talked about the medal various times but as of yet had not explained it or posted a link hope you enjoy this and happy memorial day.
edit on 28-5-2012 by KilrathiLG because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 28 2012 @ 02:57 PM
Credit you with an interesting post.

Take credit away by making it hard to read due to zero punctuation and lack of capital letters to help the reader make sense of it all.


posted on May, 28 2012 @ 03:11 PM
reply to post by paraphi

yeah trying to clean it up as we speak but punctuation and grammer were never my strong suit nevertheless thanks for pointing that out and ill go try to clean it up

posted on May, 28 2012 @ 03:27 PM
Reply to post by KilrathiLG

Paraphi is obviously a cat person. Lol

I think this is an awesome, very uplifting thread you've got here. Was looking forward to reading some war stories but didn't expect to read this. Thanks. I would S&F your thread if I wasn't on mobile.

I was only joking paraphi

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posted on May, 28 2012 @ 03:32 PM
reply to post by strafgod

Simon wasn’t your ordinary cat. Nope, he was a sea cat through and through. He was stationed on the HMS Amethyst with the British Royal Navy during the Chinese civil war in 1949. His expertise as one of the most highly decorated rat snipers of the war actually helped save the lives of the sailors. His ability to take out rats was uncanny and he managed to protect the food supply from these dirty creatures during a siege. During the battle this soldier was injured with shrapnel. The sailors brought Simon back home after the battle and Simon was greeted with a hero’s welcome. Sadly the battle wounds were too much for one of Simon’s lives and he passed away. He was posthumously awarded a Dickin medal and will never be forgotten. Now that he is equipped with angel wings, it has taken his rat catching game up to a whole new level.

well if they are a cat person this might cheer them up as its not just dogs and bears that get credit!
this brave kitty cat kept the food supply safe and died in service to the crown. link also sites a horse and a pigeon no less

edit on 28-5-2012 by KilrathiLG because: (no reason given)

edit on 28-5-2012 by KilrathiLG because: (no reason given)

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