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R.E.D. Stories

A Tribute To Officer Buddy
--Written by Tiami L. Coleburg

Officer Buddy
The two Bremerton Police Officers and a K-9 officer responded to a "shots fired" call, in Lion's Field in Bremerton, Washington, just before 2 A.M., July 30th, 2001. For the safety of the public these three brave officers placed their lives on the line. One officer was by himself. The other officer, Mike Davis, was with K-9 Officer Buddy.

The solo officer found two men hiding in bushes. The suspects took off running through the park toward the playground where Officer Mike Davis and Buddy were stationed. Shots were exchanged. Buddy went down and so did one suspect. K-9 Officer Buddy's wound was fatal.

Our thoughts of Buddy are mixed with sadness and pride. Bremerton Police Department's K-9 Officer Buddy gave his life while protecting human officers and the public from gunfire. Bremerton's K-9 Officer Buddy was a rescued dog. He was an unwanted dog who was saved by SPDR Seattle Purebred Dog Rescue and placed in foster care with trainer, Michael Schmidt. This wonderful volunteer retrained Buddy and adopted him to the Bremerton Police Department as a K-9 Officer. Bremerton Animal Control Officer, Teri Olson, and I helped to connect Buddy to his job at the Bremerton Police Department. I am proud to have played this small part in Buddy's life, even with this tragic ending. Without Buddy's rescuers, perhaps this story would be even sadder than it is.

I spoke with Michael Schmidt and he told me of the last time he saw Buddy. "I worked Buddy yesterday afternoon at my place. Buddy had a good training session and he was really fired up doing what he loved and what he was designed for. I think the session was very rewarding for him. The last thing Officer Mike Davis said was that Sunday was always a busy night for them because they were the only K-9 unit working in the entire county - and they always get a call out on Sundays. Buddy went home for a 1/2 hour rest and then onto duty. His last duty. I feel for Officer Mike Davis. He had an extremely strong bond with Buddy. They were a wonderful partnership and he must be devastated. Buddy had found his place in life for the first time with this officer."

Buddy finally had happiness in his life. This once unwanted dog gave his life on July 30th so his beloved partner would go home to his family. Deepest condolences to Buddy's partner and handler Police Officer Mike Davis, the Bremerton Police Department, and Michael Schmidt who fostered and trained Buddy.

In Memory Of Buddy
In honor of Buddy, R.E.D. set up a temporary memorial fund to raise money to purchase bullet proof jackets and other safety equipment for K-9 Police Officers. This fund assisted 6 police dogs and police officers. This fund raising effort in the wake of the tragic loss of Buddy brought some safety to K-9 Officers who selflessly serve to protect our brave officers and our community. Thank you Buddy for the service you have given to mankind and for helping save the life of another fine Bremerton Police Officer. You will be missed and your sacrifice shall not be forgotten. Rest in peace Brave Boy.
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