Mount Dora Police Department Bids Farewell to K-9 Officer

The Mount Dora Honor Guard at the Memorial Service

Last Friday a somber memorial service was held at the Mount Dora Police Department for Brisko, retired K-9 officer who passed away May 18.

His handler Cpl. Jeremy Alexander, the Mount Dora Police Department, several council members, and members of  the public were present to honor the service of Mount Dora’s deceased K-9 officers.

Brisko was 11 years old when he passed away suddenly from cancer earlier this month.  He had retired from service with the Mount Dora Police Department at the age of 9 and was living with Alexander.

One of the most poignant moments of the service happened as Officer Mendoza stood silently accompanied by her K-9  Titan while Chief O’Grady described the great purpose and bond that human and canine officer share.

“The dogs are partners to their handlers in the truest sense.  They get up every day with a purpose, to go to work with their handler.  When the human officer puts on the uniform and the vest, the dog is there, it knows that it is a work day, and it is ready to accompany its partner to work,” explained O’Grady.  “But, as in the case of Brisko, there comes the day when the dog has to retire, to stay behind while his partner puts on the uniform and leaves for work.  It is a difficult transition for dog and officer.”  And it was one that Corporal Jeremy Alexander had gone through with Brisko, making their bond that much stronger, the parting that much more difficult.

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Brisko – served by his handler’s and partner’s side until his retirement two years ago.
The Mount Dora Police Honor Guard presents the flag
The Mount Dora Police Honor Guard presents the flag
Chief O'Grady addresses the crowd
Chief O’Grady addresses the crowd
A permanent memorial was created in front of the police station to honor the canines.
A permanent memorial was created in front of the police station to honor the canines.
With the passing of Brisko the Mount Dora Police Department decided it was time to honor all four of the police dogs who have passed away.
With the passing of Brisko the Mount Dora Police Department decided it was time to honor all four of the police dogs who have passed away.

Read more about Mount Dora’s K-9 officers here.

Melissa DeMarco, Editor (editor@mountdoracitizen.com)