Last updated: April 29. 2014 12:45AM - 819 Views

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WRIGHT-PATTERON AIR FORCE BASE (WDTN) — Like any working relationships, you need to get along with your co-workers, especially when one is responsible for keeping you alive.

One such relationship was formally put to rest at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base Friday, April 25, when full military honors were displayed for Arko, the hero canine.

“We’re not just celebrating a dog’s life, we celebrate a serviceman’s life,” said Sgt. Aaron Walker, US Air Force.

Arko, the 6-year-old Brindle German Shepherd, is now a fallen member of the U. S. military. His job as a patrol explosives protection canine was to sniff out bombs. After three overseas deployments including Afghanistan and Kuwait, Arko died two months ago of an intestinal problem. He had three handlers in his short life, all describing him as a partner, a buddy, a life saver.

Walker spoke lovingly of his work partner, who weighed between 75 and 85 pounds and had paws like a bear. By human standards, Arko was a workaholic. Staff Sgt. Walker said his new canine partner is Duco. They are working hard to get to know each to build the rapport he had with Arko.

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