Military Working Dog Receives Hero’s Send Off As He’s Laid To Rest
An 11-year-old German Shepherd named Febe spent ten years serving his country in the United States Air Force as a working dog. His handler, retired Air Force Tech Sgt. Tommy Hollis worked with many military working dogs through his years of service, but Febe was his favorite.
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Together, Hollis and Febe worked in Iraq, looking for hidden explosives that could take military service members or innocent civilians out. When Hollis retired in 2014, Febe still stayed in service. Hollis was the first in line to adopt him, however, when Febe retired in 2015, and they spent the last two years together happily enjoying their days.
Febe recently developed an aggressive bladder and pancreas cancer, though, and had to be euthanized. Their time together cut short, Hollis escorted his best friend to Barksdale Air Force Base so he could be honored as the true American hero he was.
Hollis said that Febe was a special dog, spending 90% of his life in the military, and being responsible for the safety of thousands of service members. He said that Febe’s personality was on that was so unique for a service dog because though he was an excellent working dog, he had a soft heart and loved being pet and loved on.
Febe’s last handler in the Air Force, Staff Sgt. Stephen Lammers, said that he was fun and energetic and had an amazing nose–he really didn’t need to have much training with new handlers as they came because what to do was so intrinsic for him.
As the cancer was diagnosed, Hollis worked to ensure Febe’s last days were the best…sitting with Hollis in their yard and feasting on steak and hamburger.
Before the base veterinarian took him in for euthanasia, he was escorted by 2nd Security Forces Squadron personnel as well as members of the Louisiana State Police. He was given a police escort to Heavenly Acres in Shreveport, where he was cremated. Hollis’s family will keep Febe’s ashes with them.
Hollis said that while he was an American hero, what he’ll miss most was the goofy smile he always had on his face.
Rest in peace, sweet Febe, and thank you for your service.
More by Lori Ennis