War dogs

While most of the Veteran’s Day activities were focused on the Square this morning, I headed out to Ernie Dallas Park, in far southeastern Denton to watch as two new plaques were added to the Walk of Honor there.

Monty Slough was a dog handler in the Vietnam War and he made sure that some new plaques would honor both the fallen vets of that war and the fallen dogs of all wars.

A war dog memorial was dedicated last week at Lackland AFB in San Antonio.

A story in tomorrow’s newspaper will have a little bit more about Monty and Brandi, the German shepherd who was his constant companion in 1970-71, until he was injured in a firefight.

Slough learned later that the enemy had a bounty on handlers. Extra payment was given for the patch each handler wore on his uniform and for the branded ear of the dog, he said.

I was glad that I had read Susan Orleans’ fantastic book, Rin Tin Tin, earlier this year. Yes, the book is filled with Hollywood history, and dog breed history, but the best part, for me, was her in-depth look at war dogs and the pivotal role that Rin Tin Tin played in that history of U.S. warfare.

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