Plans underway to erect K-9 memorial in Grand Island
GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (AP) — Current and former Nebraska law enforcement officers are trying to raise money for a memorial honoring the service dogs and horses that help fight crime.
Organizers said at an announcement ceremony Wednesday at Grand Island’s Law Enforcement Center that work is expected to begin in 18 to 24 months on the memorial, which would stand next to the Nebraska Law Enforcement Memorial. Jarret Daugherty, chairman of the Nebraska Law Enforcement Memorial Committee, said the committee hopes to raise $25,000 to $30,000 for the project.
“We don’t have a memorial for our law enforcement family members who are service animals, and they’re a significant part of our family and the significant part of the families that they live with on and off duty,” Daugherty said.
The idea came from the Blue Knights motorcycle club and was inspired by the January 2016 death of Kobus, a K-9 who worked with the Omaha Police Department.
“When we heard about K-9 Kobus losing his life protecting other officers, we noticed there really was no avenue for the community to memorialize those officers,” said Blue Knight member Corey Zimmer. The Blue Knights are current and retired law enforcement personnel.
The police dog was shot and killed after he entered an Omaha home during a standoff with a man who authorities said died of medical problems while in custody more than a week after the incident.
According to the animal memorial plans, it will sit just northwest of the police memorial, which carries 144 names. The animal memorial will have a concrete patio, two benches and a pillar on which images of a dog and horse will be etched.