Police and community members with the Wellington Police District in New Zealand have said their farewells to Gazza, a 4-year-old police dog who was shot and killed April 22 while apprehending a criminal trying to evade capture.
“Today we said farewell to our friend and colleague, Wellington Police Dog Gazza,” the police department wrote in a tribute to the dog on its Facebook page. “His job was to obey, serve and protect. This he bravely did.”
The German Shepherd Dog was placed on operational police patrol in 2013 and, with his partner and handler Constable Josh Robertson, had been very effective serving in the Wellington Police District, Todd Southall, national coordinator of police dogs inspector told the New Zealand Herald.
A plaque bearing Gazza’s name, along with his service details, will go up on a memorial wall at the Police Dog Training Centre in Trentham where other police dogs killed in the line of duty are honored.
On a positive note, Gazza’s sister Gypsy just gave birth to 11 puppies, and one of those pups will replace Gazza.
“In about a month a very special new arrival will be coming to Central District Police,” the district said in another Facebook post. “We are getting a new police dog puppy.
“He or she is even more precious as they are the niece or nephew of Gazza the Police dog who was killed last week,” the post continued.
Goodbye to Gazza. The city of Wellington will surely miss your service.