NEWS | Nov. 4, 2019

JB MDL members honor military working dogs at memorial service

By Tech. Sgt. Austin Knox Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst Public Affairs

Security Forces members across the joint base gathered at the McGuire Chapel on Nov. 1 to honor two military working dogs during a memorial service.

Patrol explosive detector dogs Robby and Bagira both served more than 88,000 combined hours of detection time while serving at Joint Base MDL and abroad to countries such as Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.

"It is an honor to see so many personnel here this morning as well as honor the life and service of these two patriots," said Lt. Col. Patrick Bass, 87th Security Forces Squadron commander. We lost a member of our family, and losing a member of your family is never easy, but we will always remember them."

Both dogs shared the same birthday but were born a year apart, with Bagira born on Jan. 9, 2008, and Robby a year later. Bagira arrived at Joint Base MDL on April 14, 2010, and Robby arrived at on April 4, 2012.

"I've never experienced a bond like this before," said Air Force Staff Sgt. Alec Ducsay, an 87th SFS military working dog handler and also Robby's handler. "I'll always remember sweet little Robby."

Both dogs passed away due to terminal illness. Robby dedicated over 10,000 training hours, searched over 21,000 items totaling more than 50,000 hours of detection time while being stationed at home and abroad in Saudi Arabia, Kyrgyzstan and Kuwait. Bagira performed more than 200 demonstrations, searched over 21,000 items and served abroad in Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia.