By Jeff Noble // Staff Writer
Three new employees have joined the ranks in Williamsburg and Whitley County. They won’t need uniforms, but these four-legged friends are definitely trained, tested and tough at their jobs.
They’re bomb-sniffing dogs that served in Afghanistan as part of an Improvised Explosive Device, or IED Unit. After their tours of duty, they returned to America to be paired up with law enforcement agencies.
All three canine cops are black Labrador retrievers.
Two of them are four years old, while the third is five years of age. And two of them — a male named Raz and a female named Lee — work for the Williamsburg Police Department, while the other one — Madi, a female — has joined the Whitley County Jailer’s Office.
All three reported for duty Friday.
“These dogs have saved lives and several thousand persons in Afghanistan. They cost the Jailer’s Office and Williamsburg Police nothing. If we get one call about a bomb threat, and find a bomb, it’s worth it,” Whitley County Jailer Ken Mobley said Friday afternoon.
Madi, Raz and Lee made an appearance together at the Whitley County Detention Center in Williamsburg, along with their handlers. Two Jailer’s Office personnel look after Madi — Major Steve Lundy and Captain Josh King. The other two dogs are taken care of by two Williamsburg Police officers — Raz by K9 Officer Brandon Prewitt, and Lee by K9 Officer Jason Strunk.
All three Labs are AKC (American Kennel Club) registered dogs, and have a microchip in them, the result of their previous missions overseas in the war against terrorism.
“They’re very well-trained. These dogs were all paired up overseas with a Marine, or with anyone who had a need. After their tour of duty, they went to America where they’re trained for law enforcement work here in the states, and are paired out to police agencies. The dogs are trained to be off a leash, which is important when they’re sniffing for possible bombs in a building or outdoor location,” said Madi’s handler, Maj. Lundy.
Mobley said his office found out about the dogs from Williamsburg’s Police Chief, Wayne Bird. Bird found out through an email from the U.S. Marine Corps that the dogs were available. Raz, Lee and Madi came from a company that trains the dogs, K9 Solutions of Southern Pines, N.C.
Both Bird and Mobley pointed out $30,000 was invested in training for each dog, before they’re paired out to law enforcement. Lundy, King, Prewitt and Strunk went to North Carolina earlier this week to train with the three dogs, and brought them back to Williamsburg Thursday.
Chief Bird noted his department has been looking for a bomb dog for quite some time.
“We don’t have many bomb threats, but if we do, we have the dogs available. It’s absolutely amazing to watch these dogs work. In my eyes, what those dogs did overseas with the military (make them) heroes,” he said.
By Jeff Noble // Staff Writer
Gone, but not forgotten
At 2 p.m. Thursday, the students, teachers and staff of Corbin Elementary School took time out to remember one of their own.
A Corbin man who died in 2008 while serving in the U.S. Army will be honored with a flag presentation today at Wildcat Harley-Davidson in London.
An evening of rewards and awards
Three years after the Southern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce was formed, the people who make up the Chamber celebrated how far they’ve come, and how moving forward will take them farther, during Tuesday’s inaugural Annual Chamber Banquet.
A great day of celebration
There were rays of light over Union College Friday afternoon. From the natural beams of the sun shining on Barbourville, to the glow inside Robsion Arena, the energy was bright and brilliant during the inauguration of the college’s 19th President, Dr. Marcia Hawkins.
‘The Boys From Corbin’ come back
They built this city on high school sports.
And last weekend, the student athletes from the 1930s to 1960s at Corbin High School brought back the memories, the friendships and their legacy to an appreciative town.
On the road to Nashville
Musical talent in Sydney Hurst’s family may have skipped a generation, but that hasn’t stopped Marsha and David Hurst, of Corbin, from supporting their 16-year-old daughter’s aspirations of one day becoming a professional country music performer.
Area attractions place in ‘Best of Kentucky’ contest
Cumberland Falls State Resort Park and London’s World Chicken Festival placed in this year’s Kentucky Living “Best of Kentucky” contest.
There was power in the color pink Monday afternoon, as a group of people participated in the “Planet Pink” Cancer Awareness Walk in downtown Corbin.
Ossoli Club presents the 2013 May Day Candidates
Elsewhere in Kentucky, Derby season may open with fireworks, elegant parties, or parades. In Corbin, Derby season kicks off with a completely different race, a fundraising race, and Derby weekend itself this year will open with the 70th Annual May Day Festival, where the Ossoli Club of Corbin applauds and rewards the girls who have raised money for the community.
Hunter Hills holding pet supply drive
Eleven-year-old Savannah Litton believed she had found of an abused and abandoned kitten, but didn’t know what to do about it.
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