An emotional ceremony honored the memory of a beloved K9 officer took place in Wethersfield on Thursday.
Three-year-old German Shepard Thor died last month after suffering an injury in the line of duty.
Police didn’t release many details about what happened; however, they said Thor was hurt during the search for a suspect, who kidnapped a woman.
Police said Thor served the department and his community for the last two years with his handler, Nuno Martins by his side.
Animal activists, including those Desmond’s Law, and local officers, gathered around 11:30 a.m. for the memorial that took place at the Wethersfield Community Center. Hundreds of officers from across the state also attended the ceremony.
More than 100 K-9 officers lined the procession route as the remains of the fallen police dog were carried into the Ceremony Hall. Martin could barely hold back tears from the sorrow of losing his best friend and fellow officer.
""Being a K-9 officer, especially for me, and I get choked up talking about it. I'm on my third dog, just the impact it has in the community," Waterford Police Officer Dan Lane said. "They're our family member at home, but when it's time for work there our partners."
Wethersfield Police Chief James Cetran and police said they wanted it known that K-9 Thor was indeed a fallen officer.
"He really was a fallen officer," Cetran said. "We've never lost and officer in the line of duty. I can tell you it's really affected the department. It's of course especially affected the handler himself, but Thor was part of the family."
Taps was played as Martin gave a final salute to his fallen comrade. Then, there was a flyover from Life Star medical helicopter and an emotional Martin greeted mourners offering condolences for a partner, who died with selfless dedication.
"They don't ask for anything in return and they give everything they have," Cetran said. "You can't ask that of a police officer in a sense, so, yeah it's hard."
At police headquarters, they intend to have a monument to list Thor's name and the names of other police dogs, who have served the Wethersfield Police Department.
In the meantime, the state's attorney is looking to pursue additional charges against the suspect because Thor died as a result of the pursuit.
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