Monday, August 24, 2009

More than 200 mourn loss of Ando, Ligonier Township's former K-9

From The Tribune review-

A German shepherd named Lord was there, sitting silently next to his trainer/partner, Officer Frank Marks of the Bethel Park Police department.

He was joined in Ligonier Sunday by McKeesport's Diesel, Fox Chapel's Havoc, and Forest Hills' Loki — all Belgian Malinois breeds — and fellow German shepherd Wando of Jeannette to pay tribute to Ando, their fallen comrade and former Ligonier Township K-9 officer.

"All of these dogs trained together with Ando every Wednesday," said McKeesport Police Sgt. Tim Bliss, who conducts the weekly sessions.

Ando, a German shepherd who joined the township department 2002, was diagnosed July 16 with hemangiosarcoma, a highly malignant canine cancer that attacks the blood vessels. The disease forced him to end a highly regarded crime-fighting career when he retired on July 25. Ando was euthanized Tuesday after a roughly one-month battle with the disease.

"I told them the story before we came, and they listened," said Unity resident Mary Louise Biz of her own German shepherds, Jazz and Monte.

Roughly 200 of Ando's family, friends and fellow canines gathered under an overcast sky yesterday at the Diamond in Ligonier to pay their last respects.

"I'm reminded of the movie 'All Dogs Go to Heaven.' Well, I don't know if all dogs go to heaven, but I know this one did," said the Rev. Dr. James B. Simons, officiate of the 30-minute service held at the Diamond gazebo, as the sun broke through the clouds.

More here-

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