Gunner, a German Shepherd who worked alongside Blaine Police Officer Greg Rowe for more than six years, died Feb. 10.
“The Blaine Police Department is proud to have had Gunner as one of their K9’s. He was a great partner to Officer Rowe and the many officers and citizens he protected over the years,” the department said in a statement.
In February 2008, Gunner became the department’s only K-9 after more than 25 years of the department not having one. He was born in Slovakia and came to the United States to be trained as a police dog.
The Blaine Public Safety Association, a citizen’s group, raised money to help the city pay not only for Gunner, but future Blaine K-9s Remy and Rex.
The department never had more than two K-9s at one time. Remy was brought in to replace Gunner when osteoarthritis ended Gunner’s career earlier than anticipated in July 2014.
Even after retirement, Gunner continued to live with Rowe’s family.
“Gunner and Officer Rowe can be proud of what they accomplished. They provided distinguished service to the community while participating in numerous K-9 tracks, apprehensions, drug searches and community events,” the Blaine Police Department said.