Holloman mourns the loss of Military Working Dog
By Airman 1st Class Colin Cates, 49th Wing Public Affairs
/ Published October 15, 2012
HOLLOMAN AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. -- Holloman Air Force Base members said their goodbyes to one of their own at a memorial service that rendered full military honors to a 49th Security Forces Squadron Military Working Dog Oct. 11.
Roky/M628, a 5-year-old German Shepherd, died immediately following a demonstration Oct. 2 at Holloman AFB. The cause of his death has not been determined at this time.
"Military Working Dog Roky was my friend, my comrade, my wingman and my partner," said Staff Sgt. Christopher Secondi, 49th Security Forces Squadron military working dog handler. "MWD Roky showed love to many, I just happened to be the one chosen to interact with him daily as his partner and handler."
Roky arrived at Holloman AFB in Sept. 2010 and was certified as a patrol and narcotics working dog.
"While deployed, Roky found over 10 thousand grams of illegal narcotics from a combined 90 different finds," said Staff Sgt. Michael Haeberle, NCO in charge of military working dogs. "During Roky's time assigned to the 49th SFS and deployed, he conducted approximately1000 random anti-terrorism measures, along with over 400 hundred hours of foot patrol."
In addition, Roky had a large role in many outreach events, which helped build the connection between Holloman AFB and the local community, said Haeberle.
"He loved to perform in demonstrations, I could see how excited he got when it was time to perform," said Secondi. "Roky never failed to put a smile on my face and those he worked with."
Roky also assisted the First Sergeants and Commanders drug enforcement policies on base by conducting 10 dorm sweeps that located eight different illegal substances during those searches, said Haeberle.
"I have been in this program since 2003 and I have spent enough time to know a very talented dog when I see one," said Haeberle. "I am going to say Roky is the top of the line, I have never seen a dog like him."
Like all other active duty members, Roky was provided full military honors, which included presentation of the colors, playing Taps, a flag-folding ceremony and a three-volley firing party.
"The loss of Roky is a blow to our squadron, the Air Force and the United States of America to lose such a valuable asset," said Secondi. "He was one of the most loyal and compassionate friends I had and the loss of Roky will never be forgotten in my mind."