Only on 11: Handler arranges special memorial service for milita - Toledo News Now, News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Only on 11: Handler arranges special memorial service for military dog

OREGON, OH (Toledo News Now) - The handler of a military dog who recently passed away is working with the American Legion in Oregon to arrange a special memorial service. What this special canine meant to so many only on WTOL 11. 

Bernie was a Belgian Malinois who had worked as an explosive detector dog for the marines. Trained to sniff more than 14 different explosive odors, she worked to protect both troops overseas and political leaders here at home.

Bernie certainly had her work cut out for her, but handler Bret Reynolds says she quickly became a part of the family.

“She was just a lover, she really was. If you were to meet her just one time she would walk up to you, not even knowing you, and just lean up against the side of you,” said Reynolds.

He says the two of them were stationed in Yuma, Arizona from 2008 to 2011. Bernie also served three combat tours in Iraq, always willing to run into potential danger to protect those caring for her.

“They don't know bombs hurt people. They just go on to do what they're trained to do without any question, so to me the military working dog is the true hero,” said Reynolds.

She was a hero that was always at Reynolds' side and he says always will be.

Reynolds now has her paw prints tattooed on his arm as a permanent reminder of her service and love.

If you want to attend Bernie's memorial service it is scheduled to start at noon Sunday at Christ Dunberger Post #537 of the American Legion in Oregon. 

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