Connecticut’s First Company Governor’s Foot Guard named late West Hartford, Connecticut police dog Kora the recipient of the Stubby Award for Canine Heroism. In a ceremony February 19th, the guard presented Kora’s partner and friend, Officer Eric Rocheleau, with the award. The Stubby Awards are given to dogs involved in acts of heroism in the Constitution State.
The Stubby Award was well deserved, as Kora excelled in her duties as canine officer for the city of West Hartford. After acquiring the trained German Shepherd from the Czech Republic, Kora learned to track, find evidence, and protect the citizens of West Hartford. Kora was recognized for her good work on multiple occasions, earning commendations for tracking armed robbers and locating over 200 bags of heroin.
She was the recipient of the Daniel Wesson Award in 2005, given to her by the Connecticut Police Chiefs Association. Kora and Officer Rocheleau also served as the face of the department within the community, visiting schools and senior centers on missions of public outreach. Kora retired in August, 2011, after nine years of distinguished service.
The honor was bittersweet for those attending the ceremony, as Kora was not present to accept the award she earned. She was diagnosed with cancer soon after beginning her retirement, a veterinarian’s examination confirming the presence of tumors on her spine and liver. Kora’s condition worsened, and after a final ride with Officer Rocheleau, she had to be euthanized.
The Stubby Award for Canine Heroism is named for the famous war dog, Sergeant Stubby, a heroic American Pit Bull Terrier mix who served in World War I. Sergeant Stubby went on to become the nation’s most decorated war dog and the first dog to earn rank in the United States Armed Forces.